Despite the many advancements the workplace has undergone in terms of technology and the way systems run, fundamental issues like harassment and discrimination continue to exist.
Pregnant workers to this day face unfortunate levels of discrimination. But how does this particular form of discrimination manifest?
Discrimination before and after hiring
The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission discusses the discrimination that pregnant workers often face. These pregnant workers may end up facing discrimination before they even get into a company. Specifically, some employers may put potential employees on a blacklist just for being pregnant. The ones who do that often quote so-called fears of these workers leaving as soon as they give birth, or not dedicating their all as employees.
When workers already part of a company get pregnant, they may also face discrimination. Specifically, workers may notice the sudden cessation of talks about promotions or raises.
What is an “ice out”?
Some workers even experience a phenomenon called an “ice out”. When a victim gets targeted for this, the perpetrators will do everything they can to make the victim feel excluded. This can range from leaving them out of social events off the clock, to even refusing to share important information like the time and date of meetings.
The goal of this tactic is to get the employee to leave of their own accord in order to avoid these feelings of ostracizing isolation. In many cases, it unfortunately works, leaving the discriminated and harassed employee feeling like they have no choice but to escape.
But employees who suffer from pregnancy discrimination actually have many different options if they want to pursue damages.