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Clarifying working parents’ rights

Marketplace Staff May 24, 2007
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Clarifying working parents’ rights

Marketplace Staff May 24, 2007
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TEXT OF STORYLISA NAPOLI: The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has a warning for employers: Don’t treat working parents unfairly. Pat Loeb has more on the new edict handed down by the EEOC.


PAT LOEB: There is no federal law specifically protecting working caregivers, but the EEOC’s new guidance clarifies that those workers are covered by other anti-discrimination laws, such as the one against sex discrimination.

Leslie Silverman is EEOC vice chair.

LESLIE SILVERMAN: When an employer treats mothers with young children less favorably than fathers with young children, or when an employer makes decisions based on stereotypes about people with caregiving responsibilities, it may in fact be sex discrimination.

Silverman says the guidelines are necessary, because the number of workers with children or elderly parents is steadily increasing.

Indeed, the Center for Work Life Law at the University of California, Hastings says caregiver discrimination cases have increased 400 percent in the last 10 years.

The center’s law director, Joan Williams, welcomes the EEOC guidance.

JOAN WILLIAMS: It’s sweeping, it’s very thoughtful and I think it’s going to be extremely helpful to employers and to employees.

In Los Angeles, I’m Pat Loeb for Marketplace.

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