In July 2018, ABB filed a class action lawsuit challenging Walmart’s brutal absence policy for violating New York’s pregnancy accommodation law. Last week Walmart announced significant changes to its policy nationwide, which include making clear that workers will no longer be punished for pregnancy-related absences.
This is a major victory for pregnant workers at Walmart, the nation’s largest private employer! No longer should pregnant workers like our clients, Kaitlyn and Leigha, be punished for seeking urgent pregnancy-related medical care.
In a major report released in June 2017, with support from Organization United for Respect (OUR), we documented how Walmart’s attendance policy wreaks havoc on the lives of workers and potentially violates laws protecting workers who are pregnant, have disabilities or serious illnesses, and who are caregivers.
In addition, Walmart plans to introduce forty-eight hours of protected paid time off (PTO) to all associates, which is much-needed support for workers when illness or emergency strikes. For employees working 8-hour shifts, that’s the equivalent of 6 work days.
We celebrate this victory for Walmart workers while we continue to review and monitor these changes closely. We will not rest until no Walmart worker is penalized for a lawful absence.