New York accuses Amazon of employment discrimination against pregnant women and disabled people

The state of New York charged amazon to discriminate against pregnant workers and staff with disabilities by refusing to make reasonable accommodations to their working conditions.

The claim filed by the New York State Division of Human Rights accuses Amazon of allowing its managers to ignore requests to make working conditions more flexible for employees protected by human rights law.

“My administration will hold accountable any employer, no matter how large or small, that fails to treat their workers with the dignity and respect they deserve,” said New York Governor Kathy Hochul.

The text indicates that Amazon has 23 job sites in New York with more than 39,000 workers in total.

In one of the cases cited, a pregnant worker asked that she not be required to lift packages weighing more than 25 pounds (more than 11 kilos). The manager refused, resulting in an injury that forced the employee to take “indefinite unpaid leave.”

In another case, a manager denied the request of a worker who submitted medical documentation justifying the need for a specific sleep schedule.

A consultant recommended making the change, but changed his position after the manager refused to do so, the firm said.

“Since the 1970s, years before the (federal) Americans with Disabilities Act, New York State has prohibited discrimination against pregnant employees in the workplace,” said Melissa Franco, deputy commissioner for the Human Rights Division law enforcement.

“The division will work to ensure that everyone in our state fully enjoys the rights and dignity required by law,” he added.

This New York state agency is seeking an administrative order requiring Amazon to end current conduct, train managers on how to handle reasonable accommodation requests and pay civil penalties.

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