Company Must Reinstate Employee Who Was Fired Because She Was Expecting
LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – Crothall Healthcare, Inc., a Pennsylvania-based nationwide provider of support services to health care institutions, will pay $88,422, reinstate a fired employee and furnish other relief to settle a pregnancy discrimination lawsuit brought by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the agency announced today.
According to the EEOC’s lawsuit, Civil Action No. 4:10 CV 1221 JMM, filed in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Arkansas, Crothall Healthcare fired a housekeeping employee working at Arkansas State Hospital in Little Rock after discovering that she was pregnant.
Such alleged conduct violates Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, as amended by the Pregnancy Discrimination Act. The EEOC filed suit after first attempting to reach a pre-litigation settlement through its conciliation process.
Besides the monetary relief and reinstatement for the employee, the two-year consent decree enjoins Crothall from discriminating against any female employee based upon her sex, including pregnancy, childbirth or any related condition, and enjoins defendant from retaliating against an employee for complaining about perceived discrimination.
In addition, the decree requires Crothall to comply with anti-discrimination laws; amend its equal employment opportunity and non-discrimination policy to include specific reference to pregnancy, childbirth, or any related condition; conduct pregnancy discrimination and retaliation training for all managers and supervisors; and post notices about employment discrimination laws and this lawsuit. The company must also submit semi-annual reports to ensure compliance with the law.
“Employers cannot refuse to allow women to work based on discriminatory stereotypes about pregnancy. They must treat pregnant women just as they would any other employee,” said Faye Williams, regional attorney in the EEOC’s Memphis District Office, which has jurisdiction over Arkansas, Tennessee and portions of Mississippi. “We are extremely pleased that the parties were able to quickly resolve this matter without protracted litigation and that this employee will return to work in the job she previously held.”
The EEOC enforces federal laws prohibiting employment discrimination. Further information about the EEOC is available on its web site at www.eeoc.gov.