Dec 8, 2014
UPS driver Peggy Young requested a light duty job when she was pregnant eight years ago. Her midwife wrote her a note saying she should not lift more than 20 pounds for the first half of her pregnancy, and not more than 10 pounds for the second half – far less than the 70 pound packages she normally lifted on her job. The company refused and instead put her on unpaid leave, during which she lost her health benefits and pension.
Young filed a lawsuit – and lost. Then she lost again on appeal. Now she’s taken the case to the Supreme Court. But because of the bad publicity she created for the company, UPS finally announced that it will provide “light duty” jobs to pregnant workers.
Most women in this country have to work to live, many in heavy jobs. And if humanity is to continue, some women have to get pregnant, during which time they can’t do as much heavy work! Every human society, starting hundreds of thousands of years ago, recognized this basic fact, as does everyone who sees a pregnant woman in the grocery store or in line at the post office. But it takes raising a stink and a lot of determination by a woman like Peggy Young to get a corporation like UPS to recognize that pregnant women need special accommodations.
And we have to yet to see if the Supreme Court is that smart.