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Horton Law Firm Blog Perhaps Not-So-Savi: Pregnancy Discrimination in the Workplace

Perhaps Not-So-Savi: Pregnancy Discrimination in the Workplace

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) filed suit last month against Savi Technology, Inc., alleging that the company rescinded its employment offer to Christine Rowe the day after Savi learned Ms. Rowe had recently given birth.

According to the EEOC, “after Christine Rowe successfully completed a telephone interview and an in-person interview, Savi Technology offered her the director of human resources position. The day after Savi Technology extended the job offer, Rowe disclosed to the company vice president and general counsel, who was to be her direct supervisor, that she had recently given birth and had surgery related to her pregnancy. The next day, the vice president and general counsel informed Rowe that Savi Technology was rescinding the job offer….”

If proven, Savi’s conduct violates Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, as amended by the Pregnancy Discrimination Act (PDA), which prohibits sex discrimination on the basis of pregnancy, childbirth, and related medical conditions. The law also covers mothers of infants.

Savi released a statement alleging that Ms. Hughes had made an unacceptable counter offer to Savi’s offer of employment, which is why the offer was rescinded, and that the decision was not due to Ms. Hughes pregnancy.

There are other recent and pending developments that will affect the Pregnancy Discrimination Act, perhaps significantly. Congress is considering The Pregnant Workers Fairness Act, which would award reasonable accommodation to pregnant workers. The U.S. Supreme Court is reviewing whether UPS violated the PDA by not allowing a pregnant employee to take unpaid maternity leave instead of being given a light-duty position. And, in July, the EEOC released new guidance on cases involving pregnancy discrimination.

The Law Office of W. Andrew Arnold, P.C. will continue to track these new developments, which will allow us to better assist those employees who have been discriminated against on the basis of pregnancy.

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