U.S. Supreme Court Provides Roadmap to Avoid Baby Bump Blunders

On March 25, 2015, the Supreme Court issued its long-awaited opinion in Young v. United Parcel Service, Inc. to address whether, and to what extent, the Pregnancy Discrimination Act requires reasonable accommodations of pregnancy-related health issues and restrictions. Plaintiff Peggy Young sought a pregnancy-related accommodation from her employer, United Parcel Service, which was denied. At that time, UPS only provided accommodations in three situations:

  1. an employee had been injured on the job/workers’ compensation;
  2. an employee had a disability as defined under the Americans with Disabilities Act; or
  3. an employee had temporarily lost his/her Department of Transportation certifications.

Since Ms. Young did not meet one of these three conditions, UPS did not find it necessary to provide an accommodation. Responding to her suit alleging disparate treatment, UPS argued that “it had not discriminated against Young on the basis of pregnancy but had treated her just as it treated all ‘other’ relevant ‘persons.'” In its decision remanding the case, the Supreme Court laid out a roadmap for litigating such claims in court. Click here to read more on this roadmap as well as tips for employers dealing with pregnant workers.