On Oct. 31. the U.S. Equal Employment Commission said that a California company was responsible for paying $45,000 after it was accused of pregnancy discrimination. The EEOC stepped in after the company reportedly refused to make accommodations for an employee who became pregnant, placing her on involuntary leave of absence instead.
The EEOC released a statement saying that the company violated Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act and the Pregnancy Discrimination Act by failing to provide appropriate accommodations. The Director of EEOC’s Fresno office further noted that employers are legally obligated to provide accommodation for pregnant employees, especially if the company willingly provides accommodations for other employees.
The report indicated that the California company worked directly with the EEOC to resolve the charge placed against them and for working to implement measures that would help prevent future pregnancy discrimination. In addition to the monetary penalty, the company was to hire an independent consultant to help develop effective training programs and provide other relief to the employee in question.
When companies refuse to provide reasonable accommodations for injured or pregnant employees, these workers may have a valid claim against the employer. If the discrimination is widespread, the refusal to provide reasonable accommodations could even create a hostile work environment for the employees. An employment law attorney may help a worker file a workplace discrimination lawsuit against the employer for violating the law. The attorney may also assist with gathering evidence that proves that the employer has a history of discrimination, which could strengthen the case. Depending on the circumstances of the case, an employee may be able to seek compensation for lost work, demotions and any other damages the employee sustained due to employer’s actions.
Source: Legal Newsline, “EEOC secures $45,000 for employee at California company after alleged pregnancy discrimination“, Mark Iandolo, 11/08/2017