June 10, 2018

“Workers are human beings, not machines.”

That’s the message the American Civil Liberties Union is trying to send with its nationwide class-action lawsuit against AT&T Mobility Services, seeking justice for two women who say they were punished by an attendance policy for being pregnant.

One of those women, Katia Hills from Elkhart, is being represented by the lawyers after she was fired three years ago.

The 28-year-old mother filed a federal lawsuit May 14 accusing the mobile phone subsidiary of violating federal anti-discrimination laws and alleging that the company’s “no-fault” attendance policy, which assigns points for late arrivals, early departures and absences, discriminates against pregnant women.

“Human beings get pregnant, they get sick, and they have family members who depend on them for their well-being,” Gillian Thomas, an attorney at the ACLU Women’s Rights Project, said in an email. “AT&T Mobility’s policy needs to change to recognize that reality and comply with the legal obligations that come with it.”


Kalpana Kotagal, an attorney with the firm of Cohen Milstein who is helping represent the plaintiffs, said policies such as AT&T’s “treat workers as robots as opposed to human beings.”

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