Thursday, January 10, 2008

Employment Law: Family Responsibilities Discrimination

A website for employers and employees to check out: WorkLife Law. Here is how the site describes itself:

"Family Responsibilities Discrimination is employment discrimination against workers who have family responsibilities. Pregnant women, mothers and fathers of young children, and employees with aging parents or sick spouses/partners may find themselves discriminated against. They may be rejected for employment, demoted, harassed, passed over for promotion, or terminated – despite good performance evaluations – simply because their employers make personnel decisions based on stereotypical notions of how they will or should act.

Here are some examples of Family Responsibilities Discrimination:

  • firing pregnant employees or telling them to get an abortion if they wish to remain employed;
  • giving promotions to less qualified fathers or women without children rather than to highly qualified mothers;
  • developing hiring profiles that expressly exclude women with young children;
  • terminating employees without a valid business reason when they return from maternity or paternity leave;
  • giving parents work schedules that they cannot meet for childcare reasons while giving nonparents different schedules; and
  • fabricating work infractions or performance deficiencies to justify dismissal of employees with family responsibilities.

The Center for WorkLife Law is a nonprofit research and advocacy organization. WorkLife Law works with employees, employers, attorneys, legislators, journalists, and researchers to identify and prevent Family Responsibilities Discrimination. WorkLife Law is supported by grants, university funding and private donations.

Remember to check out the other employment law articles on this blog - the details do matter in knowing if a trend applies in Indiana and then how to apply it!