For the first time, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has filed cases against employers accusing them of discrimination based on sexual orientation.

In an action against Scott Medical Health Center in Pittsburgh, the EEOC alleges that a supervisor subjected a gay employee to anti-gay epithets, and when he complained to the Center’s management, no action was taken to stop the harassment.

The EEOC has also filed suit against IFCO Systems of Baltimore alleging sex discrimination because it fired a lesbian employee after she complained about being harassed by a supervisor because of her sexual orientation.

The EEOC is taking the position that Title VII extends to such orientation discrimination. The New Jersey Law Against Discrimination has already been held to provide such protections.