Just last week we reported on a new discrimination case filed by the EEOC against a company which fired an employee after finding out that she was pregnant, and replaced her with a woman who was not pregnant. We wondered aloud: how did the employer find out that the replacement was not pregnant? Did they ask?
This would be illegal, of course (but so was firing the pregnant employee).
No need to wonder about an Australian company which, in fact, came right out and asked — and asked about a whole lot more, according to an article in The West Australian.
Apparently a maritime union filed claims of gender and disability discrimination against a “labour hire company [which] asks female job applicants and workers about menstrual problems and whether they are pregnant. … The union’s complaint to the [employment discrimination] commission focuses on a question about whether the applicant normally requires time off work or medical treatment during their monthly menstrual cycle.”
Moreover, the company allegedly asked other questions which disturbed the union, such as “whether workers had seen a psychologist or had ever suffered depression, anxiety, haemorrhoids, varicose veins or tinea. … the exam had several irrelevant lifestyle questions, such as whether workers drank alcohol, exercised less than two hours a week and whether they had been to a dentist recently.”
I guess if you are going to violate the law and ask if a worker is pregnant, you may as well go all the way and ask every other (iilegal) question that comes to mind. What the heck!