Pregnancy discrimination is an issue affecting millions of Americans each day. Recently, seven female employees working for West Cost shipping ports filed claims of pregnancy discrimination.
According to the lawsuits, the women are suing the Pacific Maritime Association and the International Longshore and Warehouse Union (ILWU). While they are currently attempting to negotiate a settlement, they plan to file a class action lawsuit if their requests are not met. This lawsuit could involve thousands of women working for shipping ports across the country.
According to a recent article, female port workers do not receive accommodations from their employers during or after pregnancy. The claims state that pregnant women are so afraid that they will lose their jobs that they often work up until days or weeks before pregnancy. Additionally, the ports do not provide women with clean spaces to pump breast milk after they give birth. Tragically, many new mothers are forced to stop breast feeding or cut back on hours, which often results in their termination.
Several laws are in place to prohibit employers from discriminating against women for pregnancy-related reasons. However, the female workers claim shipping ports are violating the laws. Shipping port unions require employees to work a certain number of hours before attaining full-time status and becoming union members. However, the women claim they cannot count their hours missed for pregnancy like other hours missed for injuries or military work.
Sadly, female shipping port workers are not the only women facing pregnancy discrimination. If your employer is discriminating against you for anything pregnancy-related, consult with an experienced employment law attorney to help you get the justice you deserve.