A former employee of Walmart has claimed that she was fired after complaining that the company failed to provide her suitable accommodation for her to pump breast milk after she gave birth.
Kyla Alegata, who filed a lawsuit against Walmart on July 7, stated that she was fired by her managers, who harassed her and sees her need to pump breast milk 'problematic'.
Walmart Violated Civil Rights Act of 1964 And Pregnancy Discrimination Act
In the lawsuit, she claimed that Walmart violated the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Pregnancy Discrimination Act by denying her request in January 2021 for a reasonable accommodation for "pumping breast milk and pregnancy-related absences." Days later, she was terminated, according to the new lawsuit filed in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Florida, reported The Washington Post.
Walmart Claims She Was Fired Due To Excessive Absences
But the Walmart has given a completely different cause of her firing. Rejecting Alegata's claims, Walmart spokesperson Randy Hargrove stated that she was fired due to excessive absences. Her breaks were not related to any protected activity and her termination was not related to her civil rights, according to Hargrove, who also alleged that Walmart does not tolerate discrimination or retaliation.
Hargrove claimed that Walmart supports our associates by providing accommodations every day and believes store management provided Ms. Alegata with the necessary breaks to express milk in a secure, clean, and private area.
Walmart has a pregnancy policy, which has always fully met or exceeded both state and federal law.
Alegata, who was a deli worker and baker at the Walmart store in DeFuniak Springs, was hired in December 2019. When she gave birth to her daughter in 2020, her managers started harassing her over taking breaks to pump breast milk.
In the lawsuit, she alleged that a room was designed for her but it was not quick and comfortable to use. Alegata stated that she had to wait for hours for management to allow her in.
Once inside, she said she was "constantly interrupted" by others and would see men working on their laptops in the room while she was pumping, making her uncomfortable, according to The Washington Post.