2nd Trimester

Update - fired while pregnant

Hi  everyone,

I had posted yesterday asking for support with my job.

Today I was terminated :( I am devastated.

Now I am applying to every place on the planet to save your new house and possibly get maternity leave.

I am worried about interviewing pregnant. 

Re: Update - fired while pregnant

  • What was their reason for terminating you?

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  • They asked that I bring in my documents which they never even looked at.

    She said that during the time off a project they needed help with could not be completed and that's when she "lost it" and regardless of any complications she does not think I am reliable.

    I begged and cried and refused to take vacation this year, work late, early... Whatever they needed. I said this could at least be a WARNING and they said they were sorry.

    I had never been spoken to about my performance at all in the past.  

  • I'm so sorry you have to go through this.  I believe that you said in your earlier post that you are in Canada, right? I'm not sure of their laws, but you might consider speaking with an attorney. If the reason you were out was pregnancy related, then you might have a legitimate case. Again, I'm not familiar with the laws in Canada, but you should talk to someone about your options.  I know where I live (north Carolina) we are an at will state, which means they can terminate without cause, however discrimination is not included.  Best of luck!
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  • I am so sorry. I hope you are able to find something soon!
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  • If you are in Canada you should definitely be contacting EI and the labour board in your area ASAP!  I can't honestly believe a company would fire you when you're in your second trimester!!  Also companies need to be understanding of women going through pregnancy and generally are more lenient.  I'm so sorry this happened :(
  • I'm so sorry you're going through this. No advice, but I went through something similar. 24 hours after finding out I was pg, I was laid off. I ended up finding a new job at a better company a few weeks later. It can all work out! Best of luck!
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  • image JessIca8427:

    They asked that I bring in my documents which they never even looked at.

    She said that during the time off a project they needed help with could not be completed and that's when she "lost it" and regardless of any complications she does not think I am reliable.

    I begged and cried and refused to take vacation this year, work late, early... Whatever they needed. I said this could at least be a WARNING and they said they were sorry.

    I had never been spoken to about my performance at all in the past.  

    You're in Canada, right? I don't know how laws work there, because I live in the US, but I know that would be illegal here. A group known as the EEOC (Equal Employment Opportunity Commission) would have a field-day with a lawsuit against your employer. That sounds like downright discrimination based on pregnancy. 100% illegal in the United States. Again, I do not know how laws work in Canada, but you need to contact a lawyer ASAP!

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  • I'm so sorry to hear this. This happens far too often. I was in the position of not being able to find work because no one wanted to hire me. I'm 5 months pregnant now, and barely showing. The only employer that did hire me , took back my offer once they saw my HCG levels in the results of my drug test. Of course, that wasn't their reasoning. I currently work in a school part time in the BHRS department. They hired me knowing that I was pregnant. Depending on your professional background, maybe you can apply to a school. Most schools are more forgiving when it comes to hiring pregnant women, partially because their work revolves around children.  

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  • According to the law they can not fire you for the fact of just being pregnant. They do have to treat you just like any other employee non-pregnant employees that has short term disability problems (such as a broken leg, ect...) If they offer sick days you have to use those. If you use all the sick days and still missing work then they need to go by their policy just the same as they would anyone else. Same goes for if they do not offer sick days. If you have worked for them for less than a year or they are a small company you do not qualify for FMLA.  If it is there policy to terminate a person after so many days due to short term. disability then they have right to do so, but it has to be the same for all employees.   

    I am sorry that you were fired but it sounds like they were within their rights. 

     

     

     


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  • image MommyKristin88:
    image JessIca8427:

    They asked that I bring in my documents which they never even looked at.

    She said that during the time off a project they needed help with could not be completed and that's when she "lost it" and regardless of any complications she does not think I am reliable.

    I begged and cried and refused to take vacation this year, work late, early... Whatever they needed. I said this could at least be a WARNING and they said they were sorry.

    I had never been spoken to about my performance at all in the past.  

    You're in Canada, right? I don't know how laws work there, because I live in the US, but I know that would be illegal here. A group known as the EEOC (Equal Employment Opportunity Commission) would have a field-day with a lawsuit against your employer. That sounds like downright discrimination based on pregnancy. 100% illegal in the United States. Again, I do not know how laws work in Canada, but you need to contact a lawyer ASAP!

    Ditto all this!

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  • image jezabella:
    If you are in Canada you should definitely be contactingnbsp;EI and the labour board in your area ASAP!

    This. If you had documentation from your doctor they can't fire you.


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  • What kind of documents did they ask for?? And was there anything in their reason due to because you we're pregnant? Or assuming? Plus.. How long did you work there for? I'm from Canada too and if you worked there for 3 months or less they can fire you for any reason they feel like.. That's your probation period. Being pregnant would be a stupid reason though. If it was longer than 3 months than definitely contact the labor board like pp said.. Don't let it pass if you feel like it wasn't right
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  • image MallardDucky:

    According to the law they can not fire you for the fact of just being pregnant. They do have to treat you just like any other employee non-pregnant employees that has short term disability problems (such as a broken leg, ect...) If they offer sick days you have to use those. If you use all the sick days and still missing work then they need to go by their policy just the same as they would anyone else. Same goes for if they do not offer sick days. If you have worked for them for less than a year or they are a small company you do not qualify for FMLA.  If it is there policy to terminate a person after so many days due to short term. disability then they have right to do so, but it has to be the same for all employees.   

    I am sorry that you were fired but it sounds like they were within their rights. 

     

     

     

    Agreed. It wouldn't hurt to contact a lawyer to double check your local labor laws and their practices.

  • In Canada we call pregnancy the golden ticket. You are very nearly unfireable. For reals. It's very very bad form on their part. You have a case even if you don't think you do, so get on it. Call a lawyer and go from there. I work in HR and am Canadian and trust me, that doesn't fly!
  • image Coopdogg:
    In Canada we call pregnancy the golden ticket. You are very nearly unfireable. For reals. It's very very bad form on their part. You have a case even if you don't think you do, so get on it. Call a lawyer and go from there. I work in HR and am Canadian and trust me, that doesn't fly!
    Ditto this. Go to your province's labour board site (usually on the provincial government site) and find out your next steps. And find a labour lawyer. They can't let you go if your doctor has provided documentation for work accommodations for your pregnancy or to put you on short term sick leave. I read your other post, you probably qualified for EI when you were off due to your pregnancy related illness, provided it was longer than 2 weeks. Don't drop this, you did nothing wrong.
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  • I agree, illegal and wrong!! Do people not realize that you get sick when pregnant? I also hate to say it, but I think it is a lot harder to find a job pregnant. I know it is illegal to discriminate based on that but it is near impossible to prove that is the reason you did not get hired. Maternity leave wouldn't kick in for 6 months to a year with most companies, so I would really try to fight back with your current company. 
  • image lucianneD:
    I agree, illegal and wrong!! Do people not realize that you get sick when pregnant? I also hate to say it, but I think it is a lot harder to find a job pregnant. I know it is illegal to discriminate based on that but it is near impossible to prove that is the reason you did not get hired. Maternity leave wouldn't kick in for 6 months to a year with most companies, so I would really try to fight back with your current company. 

    Well, as was mentioned on the other thread (BMB - Nov '13) - if they have any documentation that can support termination showing a trend from before her pregnancy, it's unfortunately something they /can/ terminate for. An example would be if she showed up late fairly regularly, and then did so with increasing frequency; this could be considered unreliable, and grounds for termination.

    Do I agree? Absolutely not. The (former) employer needs to provide documentation, otherwise she can-and should!-take them to court. It may just be a PITA and not clear-cut if they can show any evidence that demonstrates a trend that pregnancy only exacerbated. 

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  • image jezabella:
    Also companies need to be understanding of women going through pregnancy and generally are more lenient.  I'm so sorry this happened :(

    I totally disagree.  Pregnancy is not a 9 month pass or reason to get special treatment at work.  No one here knows the full story about what happened for the OP, who very well could have been unjustly fired, but it could just as easily been very just.  Getting fired sucks, period.  But the pregnancy should have no bearing on it.

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  • image CNYBride05:

    image jezabella:
    Also companies need to be understanding of women going through pregnancy and generally are more lenient.  I'm so sorry this happened :(

    I totally disagree.  Pregnancy is not a 9 month pass or reason to get special treatment at work.  No one here knows the full story about what happened for the OP, who very well could have been unjustly fired, but it could just as easily been very just.  Getting fired sucks, period.  But the pregnancy should have no bearing on it.

    Once again it sounds like the company was well within their rights to fire her, as long as they treated her like any other non pregnant temp. disability employee.  If it is their policy for them to use sick time, vacations time PTO first and you go beyond that they typically will lay you off.   They have to think of their company, they hired her thinking they she would be an employee who would be there for work, they have a business to run.   It is not fair for a company to retain an employee who is has missed so much work. It also sounds like the company is not large enough for her to be covered under the law anyway.

    To many people only read the first few lines of the law and not the entire thing, there are rules and regulations that protect the company as well.  So please stop jumping to the conclusion that just because she is pregnant she is protected under the law. 


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    image MallardDucky:

    To many people only read the first few lines of the law and not the entire thing, there are rules and regulations that protect the company as well.  So please stop jumping to the conclusion that just because she is pregnant she is protected under the law. 

    Yes! I do not know anything about Canadian laws, so I would strongly suggest the OP talk to an attorney, but all the Americans posting about how illegal this is are a bit misguided. Yes, pregnant woman have rights, but enforcing your rights in many US jurisdictions is extremely hard. First you have to go through the EEOC or your state anti-discrimination agency. You probably won't see a courtroom until your baby is a toddler. Second, the EEOC is overworked and understaffed; unless your former employer fires every pregnant woman that it employed (making a class action suit possible), the EEOC is not going to take your case to court. You will have to hire your own attorney. And finally, you don't get special treatment as a pregnant woman. The employer just has to treat you like it treats it's other temp disabled employees and/or follow any other laws it's subject to (like intermittent FMLA leave for morning sickness and doctor's appointments). If your employer treats the guy who broke his leg like crap, then it's probably okay for them to treat a pregnant woman like crap. As a plaintiff side employment lawyer, I have seen employers do terrible things to their employees and many of them get away with it. Granted, if you live in a more liberal state, you might have better luck, but filing a discrimination suit can be a very long & difficult process. 

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  • In Canada it is illegal to terminate based on pregnancy, unless you've only worked for the employer for 3 months or less.  Then they do not have to give reason to fire you.  If they fire you while you are on temp sick leave and come back with the appropriate paperwork from your doctor and EI to prove you were in fact sick, then they must find a position of equal pay for you.  Once you are back from leave for some time though and they give you three warning letters for the same type of behavior ie - late for work, missing deadlines, etc, then they have reason to fire you.
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  • I'm sorry to read this!  Best of luck!
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