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Options for Pregnant Woman working with less than 15 employees??? Illinois

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  • Options for Pregnant Woman working with less than 15 employees??? Illinois

    My wife works for a small clothing boutique in Chicago with 4 employees. She is pregnant and they are extremely upset. They have told her to pick her last day and that she will not be welcome to return. I have checked the EEOC, the Pregnancy Discrimination Act, and even the Illinois Human Rights Act. Each require at least 15 employees to file a claim. Why would women who work at larger locations be protected when women who work at smaller one are ignored? Are there any options out there in Illinois for pregnant women who have less than 15 employees in the workplace? Please help!

  • #2
    Since the employer only has 4 employees, there is no federal or state
    law requiring leave for her pregnancy. It would be whatever the employer
    is willing/able to offer, if any. Small employers many times cannot offer
    leave & be without an employee as easy as larger companies can.

    After she recovers from her pregnancy, she can file for unemployment ins.
    (when she is ready, willing & able to work/looking for work)
    Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around. Leo Buscaglia

    Live in peace with animals. Animals bring love to our hearts and warmth to our souls.


    • #3
      Smaller companies are exempted because smaller companies are more severely impacted by the extended absence. If there are only four employees, having one person out for an extended period means having 25% of their workforce out. If there are 1000 employees, there would have to be 250 employees out in order to have the same impact.
      The above answer, whatever it is, assumes that no legally binding and enforceable contract or CBA says otherwise. If it does, then the terms of the contract or CBA apply.


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