Pregnant Officers Declared “Unfit for Duty” to Receive $206K in Settlement of Title VII Claim

Pregnant female officers should have an easier time of it while working for the nation’s largest bridge and tunnel toll agency.

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and U.S. Department of Justice announced Tuesday they’d settled a pregnancy bias claim against the Triborough Bridge and Tunnel Authority (TBTA), the law enforcement division of the TBTA Operating Force, to the tune of $206,500.

The agencies said their investigation found that TBTA has engaged in a pattern or practice of unlawful sex discrimination against female Bridge and Tunnel Operating Force Officers (BTOFOs) in violation of Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act, when it declared these officers unfit for duty solely because they were pregnant. These female officers were denied equal terms, conditions and privileges of employment afforded to male officers, EEOC and DOJ said. Specifically, pregnant officers were directed to turn in their firearms and were transferred to unfavorable assignments.

The medical documentation female officers provided to TBTA from the officers’ doctors to indicate their “fitness for duty” status was rejected by TBTA’s medical staff, the agencies said.

Besides the monetary relief, under the settlement TBTA must:

  • provide in-depth training to all employees regarding the protection that Title VII affords pregnant TBTA employees;
  • distribute new and revised fitness for duty and workplace accommodation policies and procedures that conform to the requirements of Title VII and any other laws enforced by EEOC; and
  • provide direc­tion to its medical staff about the requirements of Title VII regarding the protection that the law affords pregnant TBTA employees.

Here’s the agencies’ announcement of the settlement.

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