Walmart is facing a lawsuit, accused of refusing to accommodate its pregnant workers' medical restrictions.
The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) filed the suit on behalf of a group of pregnant women who worked at a Walmart distribution center in Wisconsin, according to a press release.
The women say they weren't allowed to take part in the company's light duty program, which offers employees with lifting restrictions lighter work. One of the women claims her request to take part in the program was denied multiple times, even with a doctor's note saying she had a 5-pound lifting restriction. She had to switch to part-time, which meant she didn't get health benefits, and ultimately was forced to go on unpaid leave.
The EEOC says the distribution center's actions violated federal law, which requires employers to accommodate pregnancies in the same way as physical disabilities.
A Walmart spokesperson denied the allegations in a statement Friday, saying the company's accommodation policies "have always fully met or exceeded both state and federal law.”
This isn't the first time the retailer has been accused of discriminating against pregnant employees. Two former employees from New York are suing, claiming they were fired after missing time because they were hospitalized for pregnancy-related complications.