Asia Myers, a pregnant woman expecting a baby girl in less than a month, works for an employer that forced her to make an unthinkable choice between a healthy pregnancy and her paycheck.

Early in her pregnancy, Asia suffered from complications serious enough for her doctor to put her on bed rest. After she improved, her doctor cleared her to return to work as a nursing assistant at a long-term care facility, as long as she did not do any lifting. Despite the fact that Asia's employer routinely grants this kind of accommodation to workers with similar lifting restrictions, her employer refused to give her an accommodation to avoid jeopardizing the health of her pregnancy. Instead, her employer told her that she could either take unpaid leave or continue working without considerations for the health of her pregnancy.

When she was denied the accommodation she requested based on her doctor's restrictions, Asia had to go on unpaid leave.

"I was without work for more than 30 days, unable to make ends meet. I felt like I had to choose between my health and my finances," Asia told us. "I was outraged that my employer seemed to care nothing about my safety or the safety of my child. It's not right!"

After being out of work for weeks and watching bills pile up, her doctor lifted the restrictions and Asia was able to go back to work. But she worried every day that if she needs light duty again, she would be forced to choose between putting her pregnancy at serious risk and putting food on the table.

Many women are able to work throughout their pregnancies without any changes in their job. But women in jobs that require strenuous physical activity may need a minor modification in order to continue working without endangering their pregnancies. Too many employers are refusing to provide reasonable accommodations—although they provide accommodations for workers who aren't pregnant—and instead are pushing pregnant women out of their jobs by firing them or forcing them to take unpaid leave.

The ACLU has filed a in federal court on behalf of Asia, because it's time for employers to realize they can't discriminate against pregnant and parenting workers by forcing them off the job.

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Anonymous

I was fired from my job because I had special conditions when I was pregnant. I had to sit every hour for at least 15 min. and no heavy lifting. I was a cashier at a convenience store; they claimed they could not accommodate my needs so they fired me and the manager made a comment that she would never hire anyone who had kids again.

Anonymous

you guys are making it harder for employers to employ-
Im not against the young lady or a healthy pregnancy- but her employer didnt get her pregnant- also, the employers hired her to do a job. so the employer is being hit with a double whammy. First they have to pay her, and next, they have to pay to accomodate her. thats tough sledding on an employer. you guys should be considerate of both sides and work towards resolving important issues. this womans rights were being violated in the least bit.......

Anonymous

Hopefully these are not the same employers who want to claim a religious exemption from having to provide contraceptive coverage!

Anonymous

Unthinkable Choice; women should not have to worry of the problems of bringing in a new life into this world. The way to decide this to assist the woman. She should receive employee compensating paid for her time off work. In the case of her employer, he or she should have more consideration for the woman situation. Bringing in a child into this world isn't wrong. It is not a criminal act, it not a problem of employee discipline, nor is it a health issue equal to having cancer. She is a healthy individual wanting to bring a new life into this world. Her future should not be decided on policies which are not moral. The human resources department should recommend that she is given time off with some sort of compensation pay. She should not have to not make ends meet. Every effort should be made to assist her.

Anonymous

My friend's wife would have had to do this in 1993 except that HE took the time off to be with the baby while SHE worked, even though she had severe post-partum depression after the baby was born.
Six months later, and a few weeks after their baby had died from SIDS, he was able to get a job in no time, which he claims was b/c he was "a man working in Financial Services."
In the 80's and 90's, when she worked in Finances, they hated having women there and would use things like this as an excuse to get rid of them without getting any flack about it.
While he's always been able to get right back into the work, even after being absent from it for the more than 2 years it took him to recover after he almost died at work in the World Trade Center.

Anonymous

The title of this article is "an unthinkable choice."
But an easy choice the supposed victim could've made to avoid all this is using a condom. People who can't afford to be 30 days out of work certainly can't afford to have a kid.

Anonymous

Doesn't surprise me. My wife's employer took her clients from her when she was at about 8 months. Then they terminated her employment because she didn't work enough hours in 30 days.

Anonymous

If she made the simple choice of using a condom, she wouldn't have to make an unthinkable choice between her health and finances.
If she can't afford to be out of work for 30 days, she can't afford to have a kid.

Anonymous

The difference is the disabled dont choose to be disabled but the pregnant choose to be pregnant. Thats why owners of businesses make adjustments for the disabled and not the pregnant.

Anonymous

Shame on that company. I'm glad I don't work any longwr. The work environment has become so profit driven.

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