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Tackling pregnancy discrimination

Although the government works to create equality in the workplace, discrimination still exists in Denver and beyond. Unfortunately, there has been a surge of cases involving pregnant women. Last month, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission filed four lawsuits against companies that they believe discriminated against pregnant women.

In one lawsuit, a security guard company fired a woman during her maternity leave. The woman was told the company would notify her when positions opened up. However, they never notified her and instead hired numerous male employees.

"I had a new baby to support and no income. I had planned on going back to my job, and it was devastating to lose that," the woman said.

Another lawsuit was filed against a restaurant after two waitresses were fired after they notified their manager that they were pregnant. According to the EEOC, the women were told that they were a liability to the company. A second restaurant faces a lawsuit for allegedly instructing managers to fire employees three months into their pregnancies.

A fourth lawsuit was also filed against a juvenile detention center for the policies they have in place for pregnant employees. According to one report, employees must notify the company as soon as they learn they are pregnant. Those women must then get a doctor's certification to continue working.

In addition, late last month a plumbing products company settled a lawsuit with the EEOC after a woman was terminated from her position on the same day that she notified her supervisor that she was pregnant.

The EEOC plans to continue fighting pregnancy-related discrimination. These five cases will hopefully serve as a warning to employers across the country that discrimination against pregnant women will not be tolerated.

Source: The Huffington Post, "Pregnancy Discrimination In The Workplace Target Of New EEOC Crackdown," Christina Wilkie, Sept. 29, 2012

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