The U.S. Supreme Court will be deciding a case relating to pregnancy discrimination brought by a woman who says she was discriminated against by her employer, UPS, after she became pregnant. The result of the decision could affect how employers must treat their pregnant employees in the future, and what kinds of accommodations they must provide them due to the physical limitations that are often associated with being pregnant.
A one-hour argument was recently given to nine Supreme Court justices. Two out of three female judges who heard the arguments showed the most sympathy to the ex-UPS employee's claims; however, it is unclear at this time how the justices will rule on the matter.
Pregnant Worker Was Denied Standard Accommodation
The woman's employment law case focuses on whether UPS violated the Pregnancy Discrimination Act, which is a federal law that says pregnant women must be allowed temporary changes to their work duties after becoming pregnant. The female worker became pregnant in 2006, when she was an employee at a UPS facility in Maryland. The woman was advised by her midwife not to lift anything that weighed in excess of 20 pounds.
The woman claims that UPS provides non-pregnant workers with similar light-duty job assignments as a result of their medical conditions, but it has denied such accommodations to pregnant women, which she claims is both unfair and unlawful.
Victims of Workplace Discrimination Can Fight Back
This case is an important example of how women can suffer at the hands of unjust employers who discriminate against them while they are pregnant. Fortunately, those who are discriminated against on the job -- whether it be for pregnancy, race, sex, religion or some other reason -- have the law on their side. Victims of workplace discrimination can seek money to pay for lost income, lost opportunity, emotional turmoil and other damages that were caused by the discrimination.
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