NBC - A federal appeals court in Chicago ruled that long-standing federal civil rights laws prohibit discrimination on the job against lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender employees.
It was the first ruling of its kind from a federal appeals court.
The decision, from the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals in Chicago said "discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation is a form of sex discrimination."
Federal law forbids workplace discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, or national origin, but it does not explicitly mention sexual orientation, and the U.S. Supreme Court has never ruled on the issue.
But the appeals court, in an 8-3 decision, said "it would require considerable calisthenics to remove the 'sex' from 'sexual orientation.'"