Transgender Amazon employee claims pregnancy discrimination

Transgender Amazon employee claims pregnancy discrimination

On Behalf of | Oct 15, 2020 | Employment Law |

Employees in Indiana are often faced with their personal lives colliding with their professional lives. Because this is common, the workplace is open to accommodate for certain situations. For example, when an employee becomes pregnant, an employer offers the opportunity to make accommodations if they are necessary. Additionally, when the child is born, providing a leave to care for the baby without the fear of losing their job or benefits. While it is typical to presume that only females could experience the need to take time off from work due to a pregnancy, this is certainly not the case today.

Pregnancy discrimination

A recent case highlights how far pregnancy discrimination stretches. In this matter, a transgender employee for Amazon in New Jersey shared with his employee that he was pregnant. The employee claimed that he was subjected to harassment and discrimination after informing his boss that he was pregnant.

Due to the hostile work environment, the employee spoke to human resources about the situation.  This resulted in temporary paid leave. Upon his return, he stated in his claim that he was demoted to item picker. This change in position would require him to pick up large and heavy items, which would cause him abdominal pain due to his pregnancy.

Again, he spoke to human resources about this. He was placed on paid leave and asked to provide a doctor’s note to obtain pregnancy-related accommodations. This note was provided, but he stated no accommodations followed. He also asserted that a promotion was rescinded and he was placed on unpaid leave the month he was expecting to give birth.

Pattern of discrimination

This employee’s claim of pregnancy discrimination, the failure to provide accommodations and workplace retaliation is not the only time Amazon faced such lawsuits. It was discovered that at least seven discrimination suits were filed by women last May, asserting unlawful termination after disclosing their pregnancies.

If an employee believes that they are being subjected to harassment or discrimination in the workplace, it is important that they fully understand the matter and what options they might have to ameliorate it and address any damages suffered. An employment law matter can be complex and an emotional process to move forward with; however, it may be the best route to take when protecting the rights of an employee.