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Eliminating a position while the worker is on maternity leave

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by chazp, Nov 1, 2007.

  1. chazp

    chazp Active Member

    Is this a lawsuit waiting to happen? A paper in my area is eliminating the position of a pre-press worker who went on maternity leave three weeks ago. I talked with this worker the day she left and she told me how long the leave would be. I have since been told that her position has been eliminated (the pre-press job she was doing is being done by each editor for each section of the paper (Distilling pages and sending them to the pre-press printer)) and they will send her a letter a few weeks before her leave expires. I was told they'll pay her until the leave is up and then stop.
    Two questions—Does she have a legal case here? Also, should I call her and let her know now what they intend to do? The day she left, she had no clue this was going to happen.
     
  2. Bob Slydell

    Bob Slydell Active Member

    I think the company has to find a position for her somewhere, as part of the Family Medical Leave Act. They can eliminate the position, just not the employee. At least that's my understanding.
     
  3. MU_was_not_so_hard

    MU_was_not_so_hard Active Member

    That's my understanding, too. The job has to be with a reasonable percentage of the employee's former salary, too. So if the women's making 40k a year before maternity leave, they can't offer her a job paying 20k when she comes back.
     
  4. Joe Williams

    Joe Williams Active Member

    At the very least, tell her, on the sly or on the record.
    How would you like it, to return to a job that you thought was still yours and find out that you don't even work there anymore? At least this would be like a bush-league form of severance, allowing her to make calls and search help-wanted ads while caring for her newborn and having some income. Maybe she's have a job, with a better boss and employer, by the time her leave ends.
     
  5. wickedwritah

    wickedwritah Guest

    CNHI at its best.
     
  6. JR

    JR Active Member

    Flat out illegal up here.
     
  7. chazp

    chazp Active Member

    You guessed the company correctly.
     
  8. Ace

    Ace Well-Known Member

    You stay classy, CNHI!
     
  9. Hank_Scorpio

    Hank_Scorpio Active Member

    Here's the Family Medical Leave Act website.

    As long as she's been an employee for 12 months (doesn't have to be consecutive either) and the company has 50 employees at that site, it's illegal.
     
  10. Joe Williams

    Joe Williams Active Member

    I'm rooting for the employee here, but I do have a question: What if the employer just waits until she returns, gives her a week or two, and then "downsizes" her onto the street anyway? Not to give the pricks any ideas they haven't already had, but surely she doesn't have guaranteed lifetime employment due to taking maternity leave.
     
  11. Sam Mills 51

    Sam Mills 51 Active Member

    Family-owned paper and a former shop of mine did that at least twice - scumbag publisher. Shocking, I'm sure.
     
  12. bevo

    bevo Member

    My understanding is if the position was going to be eliminated even if she was still working there...it's legal.

    But still a terrible, terrible thing to do.
     
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