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Ralphs grocery chain settles pregnancy discrimination lawsuit over Point Loma employee

Ralphs store
Posted at 9:55 AM, Sep 24, 2020
and last updated 2020-09-24 12:55:37-04

SAN DIEGO (CNS) - Ralphs Grocery Co. has agreed to pay $30,000 to settle a discrimination lawsuit alleging a courtesy clerk at its Point Loma store was denied a request to change her work schedule to accommodate her pregnancy, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission announced Wednesday.

The agency's lawsuit alleged the Ralphs store in question denied the employee's request to change her schedule, in violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Pregnancy Discrimination Act of 1978, and she was forced to quit as a result.

"The EEOC applauds Ralphs for agreeing to meaningful measures to protect pregnant employees in the workplace," said Anna Park, regional attorney for the EEOC's Los Angeles District, whose jurisdiction includes San Diego County. "Frontline managers and supervisors must be educated on their obligation to properly handle accommodation requests for pregnancy-related medical conditions."

In addition to the monetary relief, Ralphs has agreed to review and revise its policies and procedures on discrimination and provide training to employees and managers on federal anti-discrimination laws, with an emphasis on pregnancy discrimination and handling employees' accommodation requests for pregnancy-related medical conditions, according to the EEOC.

Patricia Kane, acting director of the EEOC's San Diego's local office, said, "With the proper policies and procedures in place, employers can reasonably accommodate a pregnant employee. Employers should take stock and review their policies and practices to ensure they are compliant with federal law."