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Maternity Leave Policy - Discrimination?

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justalayman

Senior Member
Then why is it importatn that employers be allowed to do so for their top class of employees/
In the case at hand, thst top class of employees is what makes the company money. All other employers are an overhead expense. They want to keep highly productive income producers happy so they will make the company more money. The only way the op can make the company more money is to accept a lower pay rate or reduced benefits.
 

justalayman

Senior Member
Only women give birth.

I think someone tried to school me on that point a few posts back.
So?
Women lawyers get the better benefits. Male underlings don’t. That removes the gender issue. It is predicated entirely on the employees position in the company regardless of gender
 

Taxing Matters

Overtaxed Member
Then why is it importatn that employers be allowed to do so for their top class of employees/
I would say an employer should not be required to offer such benefits for any employee, whether executives or not. If they do, that is their choice, and they can decide to offer differing benefits for differing levels of employees. I believe that government should not intrude in private business or the private affairs of individuals without a compelling state interest to do so. I do not see the issue you raise as one of gender. Women as a group are not being treated worse than men in this case.

Again, if your complaint is that the upper levels of many employers are dominated by men (and the evidence clearly shows that to be true, though women are slowly gaining ground) I agree with you that is a problem. That is where the gender problem arises — companies are not making a good enough effort to promote and hire the qualified women out there for those positions. And that is where I would put the focus.
 

Ohiogal

Queen Bee
Some women are more equal than others.

Got it. Glad you are comfortable with that.
HOw much did OP pay for her education? How much did the female attorneys pay for theirs? Now, how many hours are the female attorneys required to work per week -- think billable hours? How many hours is she required to work? Why doesn't OP get off her butt and go to law school? Furthermore, how much money do the female attorneys make for the company compared to the female office assistants?
 
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brandej2

Member
While your employer's policy is indeed discriminatory, it isn't illegally so. For a policy of this type to be illegal it would have to be based specifically and directly on protected classes such as race, gender, disability, age and/or religion. Nothing in your posts indicates that this policy is based on protected classes like these. In law, "attorneys" and "the rest of us" are not protected classes.
Thank you! That's all I was trying to figure out. :)
 

brandej2

Member
It is not your pregnancy that is "less important of valued". Rather, it is your skill set, put bluntly, that is less valued.

Your employer deems that your skill set is more easily replaceable with a new hire than what an attorney has to offer. That may be a correct or foolish estimation on their part.
Yes, that's a good way to look at it - thank you for that perspective.
 

brandej2

Member
Legally, it IS acceptable.

This is NOT illegal discrimination. If your understanding is that all employees must be offered exactly the same benefits, you are mistaken. It is common and it is legal for benefits to be determined by job position. You are free to consider it "disgusting" if you like, but nothing in your employer's policy violates any laws or rights that are protected under the law.
No, I don't believe that all benefits are the same. I honestly was curious specifically about maternity leave as in many of the large corporations and even smaller run organization's I've worked at, the policies have truly been the same across the board.
 

brandej2

Member
It is certainly discrimination. Any distinction made between two people or groups of people is discrimination. For example, a company preferring to hire candidates who have a college degree over those who do not is discrimination in favor of college graduates. But preferring college graduates is not illegal discrimination. Nor, in most cases, is treating employees differently based on their job position illegal discrimination either. For example, it is pretty common in large corporations for the company CEO and other senior officers to get vastly better pay and benefits than, say, the telemarketing agents or custodial staff. There is nothing illegal about that.

Similarly, it is not illegal for a law firm to give its attorneys better perks and benefits than the support staff or for a medical practice to give the doctors better perks and benefits than nurses or office support staff.

What it comes down to is that those with the more specialized or in demand skills have more bargaining power and employers have to provide them better pay and benefits than other employees if they want to get those highly skilled people to work for them. You'll find this sort of thing is very common. If you want to get the better pay and benefits then you want to get yourself into a career where you are in demand enough that employers will give you the higher pay and benefits.
Great response - thank you so much!
 
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