Yes, we know that this should go without saying—it’s well-established that Pregnancy Discrimination is against the law. However, an employer is facing a lawsuit after telling employees that the next person to get pregnant should stay home and consider herself fired.
The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) says that Dash Dream Plant, Inc., a California plant nursery, also told female employees during a staff meeting to avoid getting pregnant. The president and part owner told employees “no more babies” during the meeting, according to the commission’s complaint.
The EEOC filed the suit September 20 on behalf of Yanet Perez, who was forced out on leave while she was pregnant and fired after the birth of her child. And she wasn’t the only one, the EEOC has alleged.
Such alleged conduct violates Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, as amended by the Pregnancy Discrimination Act, according to the commission. EEOC’s suit (EEOC v. Dash Dream Plant, Inc., No. 1:16-cv-01395 (E.D. Calif.)) seeks back pay, compensatory and punitive damages on behalf of the class, as well as injunctive relief to prevent future pregnancy discrimination.
“Employers need to be aware that pregnancy discrimination laws also protect employees after they have given birth,” said Melissa Barrios, an EEOC regional director, in a press release. “Failing to reinstate an employee after maternity leave and discharging them can be a violation of the law.”
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