Showing posts with label pregnancy discrimination. Show all posts
Showing posts with label pregnancy discrimination. Show all posts

Thursday, September 29, 2022

Correlation isn’t necessarily causation … except when it is


According to a recently filed EEOC lawsuit, Dollar General violated Title VII by firing a sales employee because of her pregnancy. More to the point, Dollar General, the EEOC alleges, fired her immediately after she advised her manager of her pregnancy. It listed "health" as the reason for her termination on her separation notice, after advising her of concerns for her safety.

Thursday, September 15, 2022

Pre-employment pregnancy testing?


I was tagged on Twitter to address this situation.

My friend did a drug test for a part time job for the local school district. When she got her results, she found out that the district also did a pregnancy test. Besides ethical issues, this seems like a legal red flag given she wasn't told this would be done.
The OP added that her friend's spouse (male) did the same screening for the same employer, but no pregnancy test.

If it looks illegal, and it smells illegal, then it's illegal. Let's examine why.

Wednesday, August 17, 2022

Walmart wins discrimination claim brought on behalf of pregnant employees unable to work


Consider the following two policies:

  • Employees injured on the job will be offered Temporary Alternative Duty ("TAD") — light duty that enables the injured workers to keep working and earning their full wages while complying with any relevant medical restrictions.
-vs-
  • Pregnant employees with lifting or other physical restrictions related to pregnancy are required to go on an unpaid leave of absence, and no TAD is or will be made available.

In EEOC v. Walmart Stores East, the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals concluded that despite the existence of the former, the latter did not discriminate against Walmart's pregnant employees.

Tuesday, July 19, 2022

Abortion travel benefits don’t discriminate against non-abortion-seeking pregnant workers


Within hours of the Supreme Court releasing its opinion in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization and reversing Roe v. Wade, DICK'S Sporting Goods announced that it will provide up to $4,000 in travel expense reimbursement for an employee, spouse, or dependent enrolled in its medical plan (plus one support person) to travel to the nearest location where abortion care is legally available. 

Last week, America First Legal, an ultra-conservative non-profit legal group run by "patriots" such as Stephen Miller and Mark Meadows, filed a charge of discrimination with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission asking the agency to conclude that DICK'S offering of abortion travel benefits discriminates against female employees who choose to give birth. According to America First Legal Senior Counselor and Director of Oversight Reed D. Rubinstein, "Subsidizing travel for an abortion, while denying an equivalent benefit to a mother welcoming a new baby, is perverse and unlawful."

Wednesday, June 29, 2022

“Abortion discrimination” = illegal pregnancy discrimination … even after Dobbs


Is it legal to fire an employee who has an abortion? This is question that a lot of employers and employees will now be asking in light of the Supreme Court's decision in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization that that there is no constitutional right to abortion.

As controversial and divisive of an issue as abortion is (perhaps now more than ever), the law is clear that an employer cannot fire an employee for having one. Nothing the Supreme Court did in Dobbs changes this.

Monday, June 27, 2022

The best response to the end of Roe v. Wade came from a company called DICK’S


Within hours of the Supreme Court announcing its decision in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, Lauren Horbart, the President and CEO of DICK'S Sporting Goods, posted the following on LinkedIn.
At DICK’S, our teammates are the heart of our business, and we are committed to protecting their health and well-being.… 
In response to today's ruling, we are announcing that if a state one of our teammates lives in restricts access to abortion, DICK'S Sporting Goods will provide up to $4,000 in travel expense reimbursement to travel to the nearest location where that care is legally available. This benefit will be provided to any teammate, spouse or dependent enrolled in our medical plan, along with one support person.

We recognize people feel passionately about this topic -- and that there are teammates and athletes who will not agree with this decision. However, we also recognize that decisions involving health and families are deeply personal and made with thoughtful consideration. We are making this decision so our teammates can access the same health care options, regardless of where they live, and choose what is best for them.

Wednesday, January 12, 2022

Pumping up workplace lactation rights


The U.S. Department of Labor has reached a settlement with Labcorp over allegations that it failed to provide lactating employees a space for them to express milk privately without fear of intrusion.

The investigation stemmed from an allegation of one employee in the company's Lynwood, California, location. DOL investigators determined that when the employee asked for a private place to express her breast milk, supervisors offered a common space that resulted in her being interrupted twice. As result, and per its settlement with the DOL, Labcorp has agreed, for all of its 2,000-plus locations nationwide, to "provide a private space as required with a notification on the door to guarantee an intrusion-free space."

Thursday, February 4, 2021

No, you don’t get to keep your paid leave after your position is eliminated


The headline reads, "Trump aides made a late request to Team Biden to extend their parental leave. They said no." Here's the story:
[A] number of ex-Trump political officials … lost their parental leave when Joe Biden was sworn into office. It's a byproduct of the field they're in: Their boss (the president) may have been the one let go, but his departure has meant that they, too, lose their jobs and benefits. Still, they argue that the Biden administration should have honored their leave by keeping them on payroll until the end of it — a request that … the Biden transition did not grant.
One such employee, Vanessa Ambrosini, welcomed a new baby the week before Christmas, and was looking forward to parental leave through mid to late March. "I got completely screwed," she says.

No, Vanessa, you didn't. What you got was unemployed, a fact of which you should have been well aware since at least November 7. In fact, you should have been aware of it for more than a month before you started your maternity leave. It seems to me these employees are trying to take advantage of the consequences of which they were well aware in an attempt to make the new administration look bad. I don't buy it.

Monday, January 13, 2020

CBS News misrepresents an employer’s obligation to accommodate an employee’s pregnancy


I watched with great interest yesterday story on CBS Sunday Morning about an employer’s obligation to accommodate an employee’s pregnancy. The report told the stories of various women who lost their jobs because their employers refused to reasonably accommodate their pregnancies, all in the context of a call to pass a federal law mandating reasonable accommodations for pregnant workers.

According to CBS News: “[U]nder the current federal law, while employers are prohibited from firing or refusing to hire pregnant workers, they aren’t always required to make any on-the-job accommodations, such as offering more bathroom breaks or temporary desk jobs.”

That statement, however, distorts and undersells the current state of the law.

Tuesday, October 1, 2019

Why are so many employers discriminating against lactating moms?


Women were told to pump in their manager’s office or a meeting room without locks, where they were walked in on repeatedly. Many had to pump in view of security cameras. In two separate cases, restaurant workers were instructed to pump behind the bread racks, leaving them partly visible to colleagues and customers. 
Those who do find an appropriate space often don’t receive the time they need to fully empty their breasts. A McDonald’s worker was yelled at and ordered to return to work before she was done pumping. A Family Dollar worker asked for more time to pump and got demoted to part-time. A spa employee was required to sign a piece of paper agreeing that she wouldn’t take any more breaks. Her inability to pump caused her to leak milk from her breasts while she worked.
These are just a few of the stories of discrimination against lactating moms the Huffington Post recently shared. These employers are likely violating both Title VII (which would prohibit employers from denying breaks to these moms while granting breaks to others), and the Affordable Care Act (which specifically requires employers to provide lactation breaks).

Thursday, September 19, 2019

Accommodating pregnant employees is a legal floor, not a ceiling


UPS has agreed to pay $2.25 million to settle a pregnancy discrimination charge investigated by the EEOC. The agency was to consider whether UPS’s policy of providing light duty as an accommodation to employees injured on the job, but not to pregnant employees, violated Title VII. The policy the agency was investigating appears to predate the Supreme Court’s 2015 decision in Young v. UPS.

Thursday, August 15, 2019

Government sanctioned discrimination is abhorrent and we, as a nation, should be ashamed


Trigger warning: today’s post is not for everyone. If, however, you are offended by what I am about to say, then today’s post is specifically for you.

Yesterday, the Department of Labor’s Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs, the federal agency that regulates and governs federal contractors and subcontractors, proposed regulations to clarify the scope and application of the religious exemption contained in section 204(c) of Executive Order 11246.

Monday, July 22, 2019

Parental discrimination claims pose big risks for employers


According to workingmother.com, More Parents Than Ever Are Suing Their Employers for Discrimination—and Winning. The article is right — parental discrimination claims (which are really just sex discrimination claims brought by working parents) are very dangerous for employers.

Thursday, May 16, 2019

Abortion discrimination = pregnancy discrimination


Thanks to, among other states, Alabama, Georgia, and Ohio (sorry about that last one), the debate over abortion is raging. Suppose you are staunchly anti-abortion, and you learn that one of your employees is considering, or has had, an abortion. Can you fire her?

Thus far, three courts have looked at this issue, and all three courts have all reached the same conclusion.

No.

Thursday, January 3, 2019

Do as they say, not as they do: employees accuse Planned Parenthood of pregnancy discrimination


According to a scathing report by The New York Times, employees nationwide are accusing Planned Parenthood of engaging in rampant pregnancy discrimination.

Some examples:

Wednesday, December 12, 2018

Alex, I'll take leave of absence policies for $5.25 million.


A: An employer must have one of these to avoid running afoul of discrimination laws when an employee is out on a medical leave of absence.

Q: What is an open-ended leave of absence policy?

Two employers recently learned this lesson the hard way, care of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.

Tuesday, October 30, 2018

Abortion discrimination = pregnancy discrimination


Is there a more controversial topic than abortion? As controversial and divisive as it might be, the law is pretty clear that an employer cannot fire an employee for having one.

Tuesday, September 4, 2018

Training won't fix stupid


A fast-food restaurant fired a recently hired employee after its manager learned she was pregnant.

How do we know this was the manager's reason for the termination? Because he texted it to the employee (which she later posted on Facebook).

Wednesday, August 1, 2018

The worst employer of 1969


1969. Woodstock. Abbey Road. The Moon Landing.

And pregnancy discrimination.

Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Maternity leave does not guarantee continued employment


By Grand Parc CC BY 2.0 via Wiki Commons
Michelle Bailey worked in the human resources department of Oakwood Healthcare. During her maternity leave, her immediate supervisor and others assumed her responsibilities, and discovered certain deficiencies in how she performed her job.

Discovery of those deficiencies led the supervisor to review Bailey’s qualifications as set forth in her employment application. That review, in turn, uncovered an application Bailey had submitted for a different position at Oakwood two years earlier. A comparison of Bailey’s two resumés on file lead to the conclusion that Bailey had falsified her later application by exaggerating her prior experience and qualifications.

That discovery, coupled with the performance deficiencies, caused Oakwood to terminate Bailey’s employment upon her return from maternity leave.