Thursday, December 4, 2014

SCOTUS Hears Arguments on Pregnancy Accommodation

The Pregnancy Discrimination Act amended title VII to prohibit workplace discrimination against pregnant employees. But does it require employees to reasonably accommodate pregnant employees? Not exactly. But it does provide that:
[W]omen affected by pregnancy . . . shall be treated the same for all employment-related purposes . . . as other persons not so affected but similar in their ability or inability to work.
42 U.S.C.A. § 2000e(k).

Yesterday, the Supreme Court heard oral arguments (transcript) in Young v. UPS (SCOTUSblog case page). At the time that gave rise to the lawsuit, UPS did not provide a light duty accommodation to its pregnant employees. However, it did provide light duty for employees who (1) were injured on the job; (2) have a disability under the ADA; and (3) drivers who lost their DOT certifications. The employee argues that UPS was therefore not treating the pregnant women equally.

We'll find out whether the Supreme Court buys that argument in the first half of 2015.