The Pregnancy Discrimination Act

This act which is usually referred to as PDA stems from the Civil Rights Act. It is an amendment of Title VII which protects employees against discrimination usually taken to be sex discrimination on the basis of pregnancy, child birth or other medical conditions related to pregnancy (Repa, 2007). An employer must not discriminate against an employee due to pregnancy and related conditions as long as they can perform their jobs. If temporarily unable to work or where possible, alternating tasks and modifying tasks is should be done to help ease a pregnant employee’s task (Repa, 2007).

Conflict Resolution Methods Applied Sarah visited her workplace severally to try and work out things with her employer. She was trying to use negotiation as a way of solving the conflict and avoid going to court (Alexander, 2004). Her employer had however been convinced by her immediate boss about her supposed laziness. The only way out was to use the law (Alexander, 2004). She thought of reporting the matter to a state fair employment practices agent (FEPA) as provided by the Civil Rights Act but ruled out the idea opting for a private lawyer to speed up the process (Loevy, 1997).

Effectiveness of the Federal Employment Laws in solving the problem Her lawyer had been right about the two acts and he used them effectively to win the case against Sarah’s employer. He accused the immediate boss of discriminating against Sarah on the basis of race citing the various conflicts that had taken place between them for no apparent reason (Loevy, 1997). He also cited his use of Sarah’s pregnancy as an excuse to dismiss her (Repa, 2007).

In defending Sarah’s plight, he said that the boss knew quite well that Sarah was a bit slow due to her pregnancy but did not consider that this was only short-lived and would soon come to an end once she delivered. On the same note, he cited sex discrimination based on the pregnancy (Repa, 2007). The judge ruled against the employer terming the action of termination as a discriminatory one. Employers’ Responsibilities under Federal Employment Laws Having ruled the case against Sarah’s employer, the court required that Sarah should be taken back to work (Loevy, 1997).

The employer was also required to pay Sarah for damages which included paying her for the three months she had not been at work. Since her baby was still a newborn by the time of the ruling, the employer was required to give Sarah work leave to take care of the child before she could go back to work (Repa, 2007). This was supported by the Family and Medical Leave Act which allows employees to take time off to take care of their health, a baby or a close family member’s health (Repa, 2007). Employer’s responsibilities under the Federal Employment Laws if Sarah was an agent of the company or a contract laborer

Generally, the rights afforded to agents and contract laborers cannot equal those of permanent employees. The employer is however responsible because termination without due explanation is considered a breach of contract (Smith, 2007). The Civil Rights Act of 1964 protects agents and contractors working for employers who have contracts with the Federal Government against discrimination by race, color, religion, age or national origin (Loevy, 1997). This is to mean that an unfair termination is not acceptable and the employee is liable to answer charges in a court of law.