Legal news reports that a California woman has filed a pregnancy discrimination lawsuit against a large retail chain. The claim arose out of her employers’ reaction to her informing them of her pregnancy. According to the lawsuit, when the woman was roughly 5 months pregnant she brought in a note from her physician stating that she should not life more than 10 pounds.
Within an hour of this conversation, the woman was told she would have to take unpaid leave. She was informed that even though she had a doctor’s note, the store did not accommodate pregnant people. She has since filed a pregnancy discrimination case asserting that it is unlawful to refuse to accommodate pregnant workers while making reasonable accommodations for workers who are injured on the job.
Currently, The Pregnancy Discrimination Act prohibits discrimination on the basis of pregnancy, childbirth and related medical conditions. Although this doesn’t mean that pregnant women are entitled to special treatment, it does mean that pregnant women must be treated equally to non-pregnant individuals. For example, if your company gives extra leaves of absence to employees with medical conditions, they must extend this practice to pregnant women.
Further, recently, the U.S. Supreme Court heard argument concerning “pregnancy
Young v. United Parcel Service, and whether absent similar accommodations for injured workers, employers
must take reasonable steps to accommodate pregnant women, such as with
reduced lifting requirements and allowing more frequent bathroom breaks.
The Supreme Court has not yet issued its opinion.
For more information or if you believe that you may have been discriminated against as the result of being pregnant, please contact the experienced Atlanta employment discrimination lawyers at Buckley Beal LLP, LLP for an immediate case evaluation.