Human resource management (HRM) is a well-established system, the key stages and elements of which are the recruitment of people into the organization, their training and payment of salaries and rewards. HRM is committed to complying with legal regulations within the framework of established laws. The process adheres to all compliance standards set forth by the state and applies them to the organization. Special institutions notify managers of policy changes to quickly prepare implementation programs. The work of HRM is supported by several laws and regulations that are steadily in force throughout the country. In terms of performance management, the department is responsible for ensuring that employees perform their jobs effectively. For this, conditions are created within which employees achieve their goals. Performance management by human resource management in public administration aims to give people everything they need to be successful. In case of non-compliance with the authorities, the subordinate may apply to the court. Often the issue is dealt with in discrimination and Bostock v. Clayton County shows that this is happening in public administration.
Despite the fact that in recent decades the world has become more open and free, people still face misunderstandings about gender. LGBT people in politics are criticized and lashed out with the idea that they should hide their orientation. A landmark case for the whole country that exposed the discriminatory opinion of the state of Georgia was Bostock v. Clayton County. Gerald Bostock is an openly gay man who entered the service for Clayton County in 2003 (Valenti, 2021). At this time, he served as coordinator in the child protection service. During his long career, Bostock’s superiors noted him with positive reviews and opinions.
However, in the years that followed, Bostock’s stance on publicizing their orientation changed. This was marked by his joining the gay softball league, which caused a resonance in the district administration. Employers subjected him to severe criticism regarding the identification and sexual orientation of the worker. Bostock testified that management made him disparaging remarks regarding the league he joined and his preferences within the LGBT community (Valenti, 2021). Clayton County then notified the Coordinator that a special internal review would be conducted on the program funds under its administration (Valenti, 2021). After that, Bostock was fired, covering the violation with the wording of the inappropriate behavior of his employees in the child protection service.
As a result, a protracted struggle began, where Bostock testified about discrimination in the management of public policy. He initially filed a complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). After that, he filed a lawsuit in court, citing a violation by the employer of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. However, the petition was denied by the district court, citing a misinterpretation of a section of the act.
The decision was explained by the fact that the section does not clearly explain sexual discrimination. It includes gender, national origin, race, religion and skin color and does not claim to belong to the LGBT movement. Bostock insisted that his orientation is directly related to the discrimination of a person on various grounds. The Court of Appeal upheld the previous decision and Bostock’s claim remained unchanged (Valenti, 2021). Moreover, the district court commission clarified the fact that they could not reverse the decision of a lower court. This is because Bostock did not have an interlocutory Supreme Court ruling or a full county verdict. Additionally, Bostock has pointed out that since joining the softball league, he has not been able to work properly, as some colleagues have expressed open confrontations (Valenti, 2021). This lowered the worker’s efficiency, resulting in a loss of performance management due to the toxic work environment.
After several years of vehement litigation, the Bostock case reached the Supreme Court. Thus, in June 2020, Judge Neil Gorsuch announced the opinion of the commission and delivered the final decision (Valenti, 2021). It was found that Title VII of the Civil Rights Act applies to homosexuals as well. At the same time, the Chief Justice pointed out that in matters of determining discrimination based on sexual orientation, it is necessary first of all to consider stratification by gender. Thus, Bostock was able to win the case and, seven years later, defend his rights as a person and an employee of the public administration.
By the time of the final decision in the Bostock case, many states in the country had passed laws against LGBT people in the workplace. However, this did not apply to Georgia, where the trial took place, so Bostock lost in court (Valenti, 2021). With regard to laws on the oppression of people of non-traditional sexual orientation, many politicians have tried to promote this idea. However, the Democratic branch of Congress consistently rejected such proposals. In terms of performance management, it has fallen as many employees have come out in support of their boss. They united against the dismissal of Bostock, which completely destroyed the working atmosphere and pushed the main postulate about the fulfillment of the assigned tasks into the background.
I believe that the final decision was appropriate and as for the opinion regarding the correctness of the court, it can be said that in modern realities, this verdict is the most profitable. I believe that the society of the new century is completely open to self-expression and self-identification (Sabharwal et al., 2019). Moreover, from a biblical point of view, the decision has support and is explained by the boundless love of God for the human race. In his epistle, John says the following: “Let us not love with words or speech but with actions and in truth” (Holy Bible, John 3:18). According to biblical views on human resource management, the department should provide a friendly environment and employ people of any gender, race, sex and religion (Sifunda-Evelia, 2017). An employer can pretend to be calm about an employee’s orientation. However, true respect is shown only by their actions, which they show in relation to those whose position is not close to theirs.
In addition, the decision is based on the fact that, within the framework of performance management, the organization strives to maintain values. Since non-discrimination is the main focus in today’s society, a company culture of accepting employees regardless of their orientation can improve their performance. The focus on culture allows employees to understand that they are an important resource in public administration and are treated with respect.
Although the problem of LGBT representatives in public administration has improved since the Bostock case, human resource management still needs to be improved. The urgency of the problem is due to the fact that many states do not comply with the law on equal employment opportunities. Within performance management, this means that employees will continue to express dissatisfaction with discrimination. Since management is a continuous and evolving process that improves performance over time, without compliance with the laws, it will stagnate.
First of all, LGBT people should feel equal to other employees and not feel their bias. The solution for this could be to hold human resource management open lectures about the culture of the company and its focus on the same attitude towards everyone (Sabharwal et al., 2019). This can go beyond the organization by posting educational and conversational videos. Homosexuals in public administration are an important breakthrough for society because in this case, other representatives of the association feel equal treatment and are aimed not at protests but at healthy negotiations. With this approach, for efficiency, a management style will be designated within which employees will be able to express their opinion or dissatisfaction.
Another solution to the problem is the establishment of a comfortable working atmosphere, which should be dealt with by the human resource management department. Many LGBT representatives, including those in public administration, speak of the organization’s non-compliance with cultural values (Webster et al., 2018). First of all, it is important to establish that people use different pronouns and the first thing to find out about this when applying for a job. Management in public administration should aim to prevent the escalation of discontent among employees (Nigro et al., 2014). Moreover, the issue of religious beliefs with those people whose faith limits working with people of a different orientation has not yet been resolved. This is unacceptable and in this case, the company must establish strict rules to protect employees.
However, the complexity is multifaceted and should be addressed not only by the individual human resource management department but by the government as a whole. Laws for the protection of homosexuals at work do not lead to the desired results, and there are still legal cases on this ground in the country (Webster et al., 2018). Public administrations of conservative states continue to express dissatisfaction with LGBT representatives in government positions.
It is worth adding that performance managers not only provide goals and objectives but provide support. Thus, it is important to clarify that employees who are in a gloomy emotional state due to the provocative actions of colleagues can influence the operation of the whole system (Triana et al., 2021). In such cases, it is possible to establish psychological assistance through an invited specialist. The employee’s condition will even out, and fines may be imposed on other employees for inappropriate behavior in the area. Research suggests that many management representatives may prohibit an employee from talking about homosexuality (Triana et al., 2021). However, this is a direct violation of human rights to freedom of thought, speech and self-identification.
In conclusion, it should be said that human resource management in public administration is experiencing many problems that need to be addressed immediately. The difficulty with workers who openly declare their LGBT affiliation in recent years has greatly intrigued the public. The Bostock case gave rise to a new direction in which the government is paying increasing attention to this problem. However, unresolved issues remain solutions for which have not yet been found. The proposed ways can help reduce discrimination in this area and help LGBT people to coexist more comfortably with all colleagues.
King James Bible. (2008). Oxford University Press.
Nigro, L., Nigro, F., and Kellough, J. (2014). The new public personnel administration (7th ed.). Independence.
Sabharwal, M., Levine, H., D’Agostino, M., & Nguyen, T. (2019). Inclusive work practices: Turnover intentions among LGBT employees of the US federal government. The American Review of Public Administration, 49(4), 482-494.
Sifunda-Evelia, M. (2017). Human resource management practices: A biblical perspective. Partridge.
Triana, M. D. C., Gu, P., Chapa, O., Richard, O., & Colella, A. (2021). Sixty years of discrimination and diversity research in human resource management: A review with suggestions for future research directions. Human Resource Management, 60(1), 145-204.
Valenti, A. (2021). LGBT employment rights in an evolving legal landscape: the impact of the Supreme Court’s decision in Bostock v. Clayton County, Georgia. Employee Responsibilities and Rights Journal, 33(1), 3-23.
Webster, J. R., Adams, G. A., Maranto, C. L., Sawyer, K., & Thoroughgood, C. (2018). Workplace contextual supports for LGBT employees: A review, meta‐analysis, and agenda for future research. Human Resource Management, 57(1), 193-210.