(Photo: REUTERS/Jessica Rinaldi)
A Macy’s department store employee in San Antonio, Texas, has been fired for not allowing a cross-dressing young man to return to the women’s dressing room, according to a law firm that specializes in religious freedom cases.
Natalie Johnson said she told the young man politely that he could not go back into the dressing room after seeing him exit the women’s fitting room, reported Liberty Counsel, a group of advocacy lawyers.
Johnson said the man was wearing make-up and girls’ clothing and told her that he is a female. The cross-dresser was accompanied by five other individuals, who argued with expletives that Macy’s was LGBT-friendly, according to Liberty Counsel’s statement.
The Macy’s employee reportedly said to the group that the company is “also non-discriminatory toward religion, and that it would go against her religious beliefs to lie that he was a woman or compromise with homosexuality.”
After receiving a complaint from the group, the Macy’s manager informed Johnson of the company’s LGBT policy which allows “transgender” people to change in any dressing room they desire. Johnson argued that the same policy also protects against religious discrimination. She felt her beliefs were being violated, say Liberty Counsel officials.
Johnson was reported to have been fired for refusing the manager’s request to follow the company LGBT policy, saying she would not go against her religious beliefs.
“Macy’s policy which allows men to use the women’s dressing room is fraught with problems,” stated Mathew Staver, founder and chairman of Liberty Counsel. “This policy will cause significant problems and will alienate the majority of Macy’s customers.”
“Macy’s has essentially opened women’s dressing rooms to every man. The LGBT agenda has become the theater of the absurd,” he added.
Staver told The Christian Post that he hopes Macy's will have "a common-sense light bulb" moment.
"First, we'd like Natalie to get her job back, and then we would like Macy's to have a policy that makes sense," he said. "Men should use men's fitting rooms and women should use women's fitting rooms. If Macy's wants to cater to the small minority fringe then it's free to do so, but [it should] create a third fitting room."
The Macy's policy was drafted, at least in part, by a consultant who is transsexual, Staver told CP. He said he feels that is the main reason for the policy.
"Obviously, the buck stops with Macy's," Staver said. "Macy's has now alienated their entire customer base by having such a radical policy."
Staver said he was not aware of any other stores with such a fitting room policy.
Nordstrom's spokesperson, Tara Barrow, said her company does not have a policy such as Macy's, but asks employees to use their judgment in making sure all customers are comfortable.
"We don't have an actual policy for transgender or cross-dressing customers. We look for alternative solutions for those people if they have specific needs to ensure their privacy and comfort, but also for other customers," Barrow said. "We ask our sales people to use their best judgment. That means perhaps looking for a dressing room in our personal styling department that is more private. We have some more private fitting rooms."
Liberty Counsel is asking people opposed to the manager’s firing to contact Macy’s and “politely let them know that this is completely unacceptable.”
Liberty Counsel recently launched its ninth annual “Friend or Foe Christmas Campaign” aimed at protecting religious viewpoints during Christmas. Liberty Counsel provides online information at www.LC.org that includes a “Naughty & Nice” list, which outlines retailers that acknowledge Christmas and those that do not.