A New York judge dismissed a class action suit claiming that women were discriminated against by communications giant Bloomberg. And along the way, the judge took a swipe at that whole work/life balance business.
According to an account in the Washington Post, Judge Loretta Preska said the EEOC’s case alleging the company discriminated against pregnant women and mothers “fell far short” of being persuasive.
The judge chided the agency for not providing any statistical evidence of bias and added that “isolated remarks by a handful of executives … do not show that Bloomberg’s standard operating procedure was to discriminate against pregnant women and mothers.”
No legal obligation
That part of the ruling was unremarkable. But the judge added in some commentary that should be of interest to all employers.
“The law does not require companies to ignore or stop valuing ultimate dedication, however unhealthy that may be for family life,” Janice Darcy quoted the ruling in a story on the Post’s website.
The judge went on to add that companies aren’t legally obligated to “ignore employees’ work-family trade-offs — and they are trade-offs — when deciding about employee pay and promotions.”
So what’s your take on the judge’s remarks? Do the advantages of offering flexible schedules and other family-friendly benefits outweigh the fact that employers aren’t legally obligated to do so?