Today, the elephant in the room is an issue of much greater magnitude, than provided relevance for. Newbie-mothers - you know what add Would-be-mothers to that as well – claiming being discriminated against at the workplace. Why? Well, because the employers have their conscious rooted in the grounds of productivity, which wouldn’t come with people missing from the office, right!
Guess what happens next – periodic hikes that were supposed to happen don’t happen, KRAs get changed without notices, pay-roll is reduced for unknown reasons, yadda ... yadda … yadda….
Finding themselves cornered against the wall, with not a single ear willing to hear their side of the story, the mothers (new ones), have taken the broomsticks (newly made), in their hands, flying into the courtrooms spelling the law to the lawmakers while hushing,
“Don’t worry, today it's us but tomorrow it would be you”
The wildfire of the emotion that many employers hold against those opting for a maternity leave, has made them overlook, the drastic repercussions of their grudging actions. Hence, different singers, humming the same song of discrimination in the courtrooms. And there’s plenty of million-dollar settlement stories to suggest, that trudging this rope with impudence in hands, turns out to be suicidal for companies.
And Justice for All
Discrimination is a grey area, with only the law capable of stroking its own definitions on the canvas. And boy, has it painted! The Jury on numerous trials have seen through the sham of employers & delivered justice:
G.E.B Medical was ordered to pay its three former employees a total of $6.2 Million after being found that the company violated anti-discrimination laws. More eye-raising is the fact that all this transpired after the company learned of the pregnancy state of the plaintiffs.
Public utility Memphis Light was taken to court by its own attorney, Andrea Mosby Meachem. Long story cut short, Meachem had a high-risk pregnancy that beckoned certain safeguards relating to her accommodation and commutation to work. As if failing at these wasn’t enough, her employer even gave her a negative review, in lieu of which Meachem lost a few assignments as well. Ultimately, she won the case and settled for $92,000.
The largest single-plaintiff employment verdict. Yup, that’s what it is. Rosario Juarez, working at AutoZone, was demoted from being a store manager to an assistant. But the humiliation didn’t stop there. Upon returning from her leave, she was moved to a different store, forced onto a Performance Improvement Plan, excelling which she was fired (you heard that right) from the company on false pretexts. The facts & the fervor of her arguments bent the verdict in her favor. AutoZone eventually settled for $182 Million in punitive damages.
Illusion of stereotypes
For far too long have the clichés of maternity leave, corrupted the minds of many. That the higher leadership of not one but many behemoths tried using brute force to quell the voices of such employees was shameful. But washing they're hands-off the matter by stating that women don’t perform to the best of their potential post their return, is a no-brainer. Avoiding hiring females that are about such age is an even greater felony.
Yes, with public damning episodes such as those above, there has been more precaution on the side of employers to not upset anyone. Yet, the idea that the situation is going to entirely change for good anytime soon, seems a bit too far-fetched.