FRANCE: Trans-Identified Male Awarded 7,000 Euros For “Gender Discrimination” After Being Called By His Birth Name

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A trans-identified male in the Maine-et-Loire region of France has been awarded €7,000 in compensation after a court determined he was the victim of “gender discrimination” by his former employer.

Syntia Dersoir, 22, had filed a complaint against the McDonald’s franchise where he worked after management referred to him by his legal, male name and asked him to remove the makeup he wore during his shift.

‘Syntia’ Dersoir. Source: Haut Anjou

Dersoir began working at a McDonald’s located in Segré-en-Anjou Bleu beginning from September 2022. He was hired under his birth name and was legally registered as a male at the time. In early 2023, he began wearing makeup and prosthetic breasts to work, and, by the spring of 2023, he obtained an alteration of his identification documents.

Dersoir alleged that the discrimination happened over several weeks in 2023 after he began wearing his prosthetic breasts and makeup to work. Management at the McDonald’s branch where Dersoir was employed continued to refer to him by the name he had been hired under, his male name, despite his requests to be called by his feminine preferred name.

The man also alleged that management instructed other staff to also refer to him by his male name.

According to his legal complaint, Dersoir detailed that during one shift, when he was wearing lipstick, a manager asked him to leave or to go to a nearby store and purchase makeup remover. In March of 2023, Dersoir obtained a note from his doctor allowing him to take sick-leave, citing the stress he was suffering from the discrimination he had been subjected to.

Dersoir complained to the French Labour Inspectorate, and was provided a lawyer by the French Democratic Confederation of Labour (CFDT), a conglomorate of national labour unions. He also filed a criminal complaint against the management at the McDonald’s where he had been working.

In response to Dersoir’s allegations, the lawyer representing McDonald’s, Maître Pascal Landais, claimed that management had only ever asked Dersoir to follow the workplace makeup policy that applied to all staff.

“We asked him to tone down his make-up, not to remove it,” she clarified. The McDonald’s policy described that all employees should wear “light and discreet makeup” only for both uniform and hygiene purposes.

French media has run sympathetic stories on Dersoir, profiling him as a victim of discrimination. Some outlets are criticizing the managers at the fast-food chain, which uses the slogan “come as you are” in the country. One outlet suggested that Dersoir’s bosses had “trampled on” the sentiment behind the slogan and are “guilty of moral harassment and discrimination.” 

On June 24, the employment tribunal of Angers ruled in Dersoir’s favor, ordering the franchise to pay him €7,000 in compensation. Dersoir’s lawyer was excited about the verdict, noting that it set a precedent and that other “victims” may now be able to come forward.

“As soon as a large brand is convicted … it necessarily provokes a discussion. This is a first to condemn McDonald’s, which presents itself from the angle of tolerance, for precisely the opposite,” the lawyer said.

Charlotte Duval, the Deputy Secretary General of the Maine-et-Loire Services Union, similarly praised the decision, stating: “This ruling is very positive … it is the recognition of [Dersoir’s] victimization. It may also open the door to other people who are experiencing this kind of situation to talk about it.”

Dersoir is in fact the second trans-identified male in Europe to take legal action against a local McDonald’s for “gender discrimination,” with the other incident occurring in Germany.

One day after Dersoir won his case, a trans-identified male in Berlin appeared at the Berlin Labor Court after filing a case against the Central Station franchise where he had been employed.

Kylie Divon, 27, is seeking compensation for “gender identity discrimination” after being denied access to the changing room reserved for female employees.

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The post FRANCE: Trans-Identified Male Awarded 7,000 Euros For “Gender Discrimination” After Being Called By His Birth Name appeared first on Reduxx.


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