Pregnancy discrimination complaints on the rise

Greater awareness, difficult labour market could partly explain increases
By Amanda Silliker
|Canadian HR Reporter|Last Updated: 04/09/2012

Pregnancy discrimination complaints are on the rise, according to various human rights commissions across the country.

In British Columbia, 21 out of 165 cases represented by the B.C. Human Rights Coalition in 2010-11 were based on pregnancy discrimination. That’s up about 50 per cent from the number of pregnancy-related cases it took on in 2008-09, said Robyn Durling, communications officer at the Vancouver-based coalition.

“I had a co-worker say it’s somewhat medieval that this is still allowed to go on, and I do see there are some sophisticated employers that get it, but there’s also a lot of mom-and-pops that don’t really understand the law and don’t recognize it is discriminatory,” he said.