Tallahassee Memorial Hospital has reached a
confidential settlement with a worker whose complaint with the U.S. Equal Opportunity Commission
sought to clarify the rights of pregnant women under a 2008 amendment to the Americans with Disabilities Act.
The employee, Amy Crosby, a cleaner at the hospital making
$9.09 an hour, filed the EEOC complaint in late March, alleging that the hospital pressured her into
taking an unpaid leave when she was 23 weeks pregnant.
Crosby said she had told her supervisors that it was impossible for her to lift
heavy bags of laundry and trash and that she wanted to continue working but wanted lighter duties
during her temporary disability.
In support of her request, Crosby submitted a note from a chiropractic
neurologist stating that she had pregnancy-related carpal tunnel syndrome. The hospital
however would not accept the chiropractor’s note and asked for a letter from Crosby’s
obstetrician. The obstetrician said she could not diagnose Crosby and recommended a
neurologist for the pains in her arm.
The National Women’s Law Center filed the complaint for Crosby under a 2008 amendment
to the Americans with Disabilities Act. That
law expanded the definition of disability to cover more pregnancy-related
impairments, and the EEOC issued regulations codifying the act in March 2011.
In spite of the settlement, Emily Martin, the general counsel
of the law center, said there is still ambiguity surrounding the disabilities act that makes it difficult for
both employers and employees to be completely clear about their rights.
“This is still a problem that is happening in way too
many work places, especially in more physically demanding jobs with lower wage workers that have
less flexibility at work,” Martin said.
In a statement about her settlement, Crosby said she was happy her complaint had been
resolved quickly, but she said she worried some women in a similar situation still would have
“no place to turn.”
Memorial Hospital declined to comment.
The Linesch Firm provides news and opinion articles as a service to our readers.
Often these articles come from sources outside of our organization. Where possible, the
source is documented within each article as well as a link to the article’s source. For
more information about The
Linesch Firm, please visit our website: www.LineschFirm.com. If you have questions about employment matters and would like
to consult a Board Certified Labor Attorney, please contact our Firm.
Disclaimer: The information provided on Lawyers.com is not legal advice, Lawyers.com is not a lawyer referral service, and no attorney-client or confidential relationship is or should be formed by use of the site. The attorney listings on Lawyers.com are paid attorney advertisements and do not in any way constitute a referral or endorsement by Lawyers.com or any approved or authorized lawyer referral service. Your access of/to and use of this site is subject to additional Terms and Conditions.
Martindale-Hubbell and martindale.com are registered trademarks; AV, BV, AV Preeminent and BV Distinguished are registered certification marks; Lawyers.com and the Martindale-Hubbell Peer Review Rated Icon are service marks; and Martindale-Hubbell Peer Review Ratings are trademarks of Internet Brands, Inc., used under license. Other products and services may be trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective companies.