Connecticut Woman Told That Maternity Leave Viewed as Resignation

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D.L. Ryan Companies, Ltd., said in a statement, that it is an equal opportunity employer and over 60 percent of its workforce is female "with a strong representation in senior levels."

"The company is proud of the opportunities and benefits it provides its employees," the statement said. "D.L. Ryan provides its employees pregnancy leave according to state and federal law. Concerning the pending charge of pregnancy discrimination, D.L. Ryan has provided leave in accordance with state and federal law in that situation as well. The company is confident that when the Connecticut Human Rights and Opportunities Commission reviews the facts, it will conclude that the company has complied with the law and dismiss the charge."

Cynthia Calvert, Center for Work Life Law's senior advisor for family responsibilities discrimination, said it was not enough that the employer said it would also not give time off for recovery from an appendectomy. In order not to violate the Pregnancy Discrimination Act, the employer must actually practice that policy if it treats pregnant women similarly.

"In other words, if the employer has a "no medical leave for any reason" policy but in fact does not enforce it and allows people to retain their jobs while out for a couple of weeks on medical leave, then the employer has to let women go out on equivalent maternity leaves under the federal Pregnancy Discrimination Act," Calvert said.

Connecticut's employment discrimination statute also states women have to be given a reasonable leave of absence for "disability resulting from pregnancy," which Calvert said she interprets as giving pregnant women a reasonable leave of absence for childbirth and recovery.

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