Woman Who Miscarried Her Baby Should Have Been Given a Lighter Load at Work

A woman is suing her employer for causing the death of her baby -- because the chain grocery store wouldn't cut her some slack on her duties. The woman, Reyna Garcia, says she had a high risk pregnancy and proved it with three separate doctors' notes that stipulated she shouldn't lift over 15 pounds, but that her employers kept insisting she do her job as manager, which required heavy lifting. When she miscarried the baby after 20 weeks, she blamed the store.

The chain, Albertsons, denies the charges and says it always works with "pregnancy-related disabilities" -- but the question remains, should an employer accommodate an employee to the point of that employee not really being able to do her regular duties because of pregnancy?

I side with the mom on this one. After all, women aren't pregnant that long. Is there really no way that this woman could have continued her job but left the heavy lifting to someone else?

I sympathize with employers too -- they do have to have employees doing their jobs. And, ladies, we don't want to get to the point where employers are unwilling to hire us because of the possibility of future pregnancies. But it just seems like a little more humanity might have worked wonders here.

For instance, Garcia says that she began suffering "pelvic pressure" one day and asked to be let off early. But she claims the employer denied her this because it was expecting a visit from corporate. Later that night, she miscarried. Could they really have found no way to let the woman off work a bit early?

True, we don't like to think of pregnancy as a disability -- but sometimes it is. Especially a high risk pregnancy. Especially one with complications. If an employee broke her foot, chances are the employer would be understanding about it. Why not with pregnancy?

Women don't really have much of a choice if they want a family. The man can't give birth and we have yet to invent robots that can do it for us. That leaves women at a distinct disadvantage in the workplace. And yet many women, if not most, must work to provide for their families. That's just reality. Accommodations should be made if possible. Now if a woman starts seriously taking advantage of that -- and using the pregnancy to basically do nothing -- then her employment should be reconsidered.

But three doctors' notes seems like enough evidence to prove that this woman needed a little compassion.

Do you think pregnancy should be treated like a disability? Should women be given special treatment in the workplace?


Image via AaronMcIntyrePhotography/Flickr

complications, miscarriage & loss


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bunny... bunnyxlover

it is treated like a disability nowdays, you can take time off.

if this woman was really concerned and had doctors notes, she could have refused

for the employer to go against the doctors note.. thats bad

Emmie25 Emmie25

I was supposed to take a 15 minute break every two hours at the end ofy pregnancy because I was on my feet all day.My boss would get mad at me for taking a break and would come up with eexcuses why I couldn't take one. Thankfully my son only had a minor complication he was breathing too fast and his red blood cell count was too high. But women should have the guanteed option to leave work early, take breaks, and have lighter work loads if and when they need it.

JessL... JessLogansMommy

I think as long as you provide a proper doctors not that you need to be on "light duty" or some other form of documentation should allow for a pregnant woman to get some considerations.  A normal pregnancy is not a disability, but a high risk one can be, and every case is different.  Most conditions can usually be accommodated with just small changes to a normal workday. 

femal... femaleMIKE

It would be hard to prove that this is what caused her miscarriage. She could have denied to do her duties.

I feel very sad for her.

nonmember avatar blh

If she had a doctors note, then she could have just refused to do those things. I feel bad for her but I honestly doubt if going home early that day would have prevented the miscarriage.

Elaine Cox

she cant really prove it..but proof really dont matter in courts these days

Women don't really have much of a choice if they want a family. The man can't give birth and we have yet to invent robots that can do it for us.

ya..nothing called adoption or anything..millions of kids in foster care

Lili4You Lili4You

I think that pregnancy should not be treated as a disability but as a temporary physical setback, much like the author pointed out in comparing it to a broken bone. And while she could have chosen to simply not do what was being requested of her, that could have resulted in her being fired and being pregnant, it would have been hard to impossible for her to find a new job. I feel for her and her family.

kaffe... kaffedrikke

I hope she wins a buttload of money. Im 100% on her side.

bills... billsfan1104

If she has FMLA she would be ok. But she has to fill the paperwork out and same with we doctors. That saves her job. There has to be more to this. But again, if you can abort the baby at 20 weeks why should she be able to sue?? Is it a baby then??

nonmember avatar Kristi

No job would have been worth the life of any of my babies. I would have walked out. That is just what I would have done.

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