If you work for the UPS or USPS as a delivery driver or worker in Texas, then you’re expected to handle large amounts of mail and heavy items each day. This is just part of your job, and most of the time, there shouldn’t be any problem. However, imagine if you or your sister, wife or other female in your life was pregnant and not being allowed to have an adjusted workload. That could put her and her child at risk, and it may be discriminatory.
There have been recent changes to federal laws that now include pregnancy as part of an amendment to the Americans with Disabilities Act; however, in the past, pregnancy could have been unprotected by law, allowing employers to refuse to change a pregnant woman’s workload.
In one dispute discussed, a woman became pregnant and delivered a letter from her doctor to her employer. The note suggested that she should not lift over 20 pounds while she was pregnant. She claims that UPS, the company she was working for at the time, did not change her workload and required her to lift up to 70 pounds while she was working her shift. UPS has said that it doesn’t provide light-duty work to employees who weren’t hurt on the job or covered under the Americans With Disabilities Act. UPS would also adjust a workload for those who lost their federal certificates to drive commercial vehicles.
That case is still being heard in 2015, with appeals heading to lower courts in Virginia. There, it will be discussed why some businesses feel it’s acceptable to accommodate some individuals and not others who may also need assistance. The outcome could help pave the way for similar rulings in other states.
Source: NewsAdvance.com, “Justices side with ex-UPS worker who claims pregnancy bias,” March. 25, 2015