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Pregnancy and Disability Discrimination-the case re Oprah Winfrey

Posted by attorney Emanuel Shirazi

Oprah Winfrey’s TV network OWN is one of the latest celebrity owned companies sued for wrongful termination and discrimination. Former employee and Senior Director Carolyn Hommel filed suit against OWN in Los Angeles Superior Court. Hommel alleges she was replaced by a temporary employee after going on pregnancy leave.

A month after giving birth, Hommel alleges that OWN “laid her off" after she had already been demoted and given an undeserved bad review.

Under California law, most employers are not allowed to discriminate or retaliate against an employee for taking pregnancy or disability leave. The question is did OWN fire Hommel for other reasons.

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