RE: Question of the Day

Subject: RE: Question of the Day
From: "James Barrow" <vrfour -at- verizon -dot- net>
To: <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Thu, 16 Nov 2006 13:50:29 -0800

>Lori Olcott wrote:
>>Jim Barrow said:
>>Okay, so a recruiter asks me if I have any travel plans and that's okay,
>>but it's not okay to ask any question related to child birth or time off
>>for child birth?
>Travel plans and maternity leave are actually very different things with
>very different expectations attached.

Not really. What I'm focusing on is the 'time off' aspect. To avoid a
brouhaha like last time, let's assume the following:

* 1 year contract position
* Go live date is eight months from today
* The potential employee are not *asked* about pregnancy, but rather she
offers that information on her own.

In scenario #1, a male candidate is asked if he has any upcoming travel
plans. He answers yes, he's taking a two-week cruise nine months from
today. So the interviewer decides that since he needs someone on-site,
every day, for the next year, he cannot hire this candidate.

Scenario #2 (same job position): A female candidate says - after all of the
formal interview questions - "This job will really help since my husband and
I are expecting a baby in eight months". The interviewer decides that since
he needs someone on-site, every day, for the next year, she would not work
out, but he cannot deny this person based on this.?

>If a potential employer knows about travel plans, they can expect you to
>be gone 1-2 weeks. However, maternity leave can be anywhere from 1-3
>months, plus all the newborn checkups and "Mom can't watch the baby today"
>and all the other joys of early parenthood. Not all these problems will
>crop up for every couple, but the expectation is there.

Precisely. This issue has always intrigued me because it sounds like a
double-standard. It sounds like an employer can pass over a candidate if,
for example, the candidate states that they need time off to watch the World
Series. But if a candidate for the same job states that they need 1-3
months off to have a baby, then the employer's hands are tied.

>As a result, there is a distinct chance that that an expectant mother may
>be turned down for a position simply because the employer doesn't want to
>deal with all the hassles they expect to see. That's why it's a prohibited

Understand, I have nothing against propagating the human race. But after
reading the list of prohibited questions, this one still makes me wonder.


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RE: Question of the Day: From: Lori Olcott

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