HOUSTON, Texas. A Dallas woman just received a $1 million dollar verdict for sexual harassment and pregnancy discrimination after she was fired from her job at an oilfield services company. According to the Dallas Morning News, the woman claims that she was fired days after she was hired, after she revealed to her co-workers that she was pregnant. Women sometimes face high levels of discrimination on the oilfield, where they may be a minority among men. However, as more women are coming forward with their stories of discrimination, many have been able to see justice and compensation for their losses.
The New York Times recently investigated the toll that workplace pregnancy discrimination can have on women. While the law requires employers to treat pregnant women like they would any other worker with a temporary disability or similar injury, employers sometimes fail to honor the law. The Times found that when employers don’t give women light duty, some end up having miscarriages after they are forced to make tough decisions about whether to protect their health or protect their unborn children. The Times investigated many cases in which women suffered miscarriages or went into early labor when they were forced to continue doing the same physically demanding work for which they had been hired.
According to the Times, women from all walks of life can experience pregnancy discrimination. Some women are denied promotions after their employers learn that they are pregnant or planning to start a family. Others might be fired before they can even ask for pregnancy-related benefits. Yet, others, like oilfield workers or women in physically-demanding jobs, might find that their doctor’s notes are ignored and their requests for light duty denied.
Unfortunately, not all denials for light duty are illegal. Workplaces that don’t accommodate temporarily disabled workers do not have to similarly accommodate pregnant women. While some lawmakers have been pushing to protect women with further-reaching legislation that would require workers to offer them lighter duty and accommodations, the laws have stalled in Congress. The law, if it is ever adopted, would incorporate similar language to the Americans with Disabilities Act, affording greater protections to pregnant workers who might need to sit on the jobs, take extra breaks, or may require time off to make doctor’s appointments.
If you are pregnant, is it safe to do lifting? According to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, there is a small risk of miscarriage among women who do lifting for work. While many women may be able to perform lifting without a problem, women with high risk pregnancies might want to take additional precautions.
Have you had a miscarriage because your employer refused to provide you accommodations? Moore & Associates are Houston, Texas employment lawyers who may be able to help you seek damages through a pregnancy discrimination lawsuit. Some mothers have been awarded millions of dollars for their pain and suffering, medical expenses, and lost wages. If you have suffered pregnancy discrimination, reach out to our firm today at https://www.mooreandassociates.net/ to learn more.
Moore & Associates
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Houston, TX 77002