Blog of Rights

Ariela
Migdal

Ariela Migdal (@ArielaMigdaljoined the ACLU in 2007 and has worked in such areas as women’s rights, gender-based workplace discrimination and single-sex education. She currently litigates cases concerning discrimination against women in traditionally male-dominated occupations. Migdal clerked for U.S. Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer and Judge Harry T. Edwards of the District of Columbia Circuit Court of Appeals. She also clerked in the Israel Public Defender office. She received a J.D. from New York University School of Law in 2001. Migdal also holds an M.A. from London University and a B.A. from Harvard University.

Tear Down the “Maternal Wall!” FMLA Protects Women in the Workplace

By Ariela Migdal, ACLU Women's Rights Project at 11:08am
More than 30 years after Congress passed the Pregnancy Discrimination Act, employers still engage in two kinds of pregnancy-related sex discrimination. First, they discriminate outright against workers who get pregnant — firing them or refusing to promote them when they need to take time off for pregnancy-related care and childbirth, and forcing them off the job by refusing to accommodate some women’s temporary restrictions on heavy lifting or other physical job duties. Second, employers discriminate against women workers more generally, by firing or refusing to hire or promote women based on stereotypical assumptions that women in a certain age bracket will — or should — get pregnant, have children, and cost the employer money by leaving the workplace or shifting to a less work-intensive “mommy track.”
Women: Do You Work Just for the Sake of Working?

Women: Do You Work Just for the Sake of Working?

By Ariela Migdal, ACLU Women's Rights Project at 5:22pm

A case pending before the Supreme Court will decide whether female Wal-Mart employees may bring their pay discrimination claims as a class action, or must bring their cases one at a time.

Pregnant Worker in Connecticut Protected From Discrimination by State Law

Pregnant Worker in Connecticut Protected From Discrimination by State Law

By Lining Zhang, ACLU & Ariela Migdal, ACLU Women's Rights Project at 3:25pm

Like many women, police officer Annie Balcastro of Wallingford, CT faced an uncertain future when she had to request a light-duty accommodation during her pregnancy. Many pregnant workers whose jobs entail physical activity are pushed…

Women in Combat: Policy, Meet Reality

Women in Combat: Policy, Meet Reality

By Ariela Migdal, ACLU Women's Rights Project at 12:33pm

Until today, official United States policy banned all women from being assigned to ground combat units. The policy was military-wide and covered our whole gender – no exceptions for women who were fast, strong, excellent marksmen, good at keeping…

Protections for Home Care Workers: Ending An Unjust Legacy

By Ariela Migdal, ACLU Women's Rights Project & Deborah J. Vagins, ACLU Washington Legislative Office at 4:31pm

"Year in and year out, Evelyn Coke left her Queens house early to go to the homes of elderly, sick, often dying people. She bathed them, cooked for them, helped them dress and monitored their medications. She sometimes worked three consecutive…

Survey Shows Sexual Harassment in School Is All Too Common

Survey Shows Sexual Harassment in School Is All Too Common

By Ariela Migdal, ACLU Women's Rights Project at 1:18pm

According to a new study, sexual harassment, including unwanted sexual touching and sexual coercion as well as milder behaviors, is a regular feature of going to school for a significant number of American middle- and high-school students. The…

Wal-Mart Now "Women-Friendly?" We Don't Think So

By Ariela Migdal, ACLU Women's Rights Project at 4:12pm

The New York Times reported yesterday that Wal-Mart is rolling out "women-friendly plans" to buy more from women-owned businesses and to help women who work for Wal-Mart's suppliers. While the company acknowledged that the "majority"…

Can Your School Punish You for Being Raped?

Can Your School Punish You for Being Raped?

By Ariela Migdal, ACLU Women's Rights Project at 1:14pm

When a girl tells a teacher or coach that she was raped in the hallways or parking lot of her high school, is her school allowed to make her leave school, drop a class, or quit a team or activity? Can her school tell her to "work it out"…

Pushing the Pentagon to Do the Right Thing

Pushing the Pentagon to Do the Right Thing

By Ariela Migdal, ACLU Women's Rights Project at 3:02pm

Yesterday, four servicewomen and the Service Women’s Action Network filed an updated complaint in their lawsuit against the Department of Defense for its ongoing policy and practice of banning women from thousands of jobs across the military, including…

Women in Combat: The Marines Take An Important First Step, But More Is Needed to Ensure Full Equality.

Women in Combat: The Marines Take An Important First Step, But More Is Needed to Ensure Full Equality.

By Ariela Migdal, ACLU Women's Rights Project & Vania Leveille, Washington Legislative Office at 3:29pm

Less than three months after the Pentagon announced that it was loosening the rules that bar women from being assigned to ground combat units, the Marine Corps followed suit, taking important steps to open up previously restricted opportunities…

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