Part II of this Note will explain the relevant statutory and case law background behind pregnancy and lactation discrimination at both the federal and state levels. Part III.A will explain why the Supreme Court of Ohio's decision [in Allen v. Totes/Isotoner Corp, 123 Ohio St. 3d 21, 2009 Ohio 4231, 915 N.E.2d 622 (2009)] to affirm the appellate court's grant of summary judgment was improper. Part III.B will explain why the Supreme Court of Ohio's analysis of the accommodation issue is incorrect. Part IV.A will describe how this improper decision could open the door to facially discriminatory workplace policies that discriminate against lactating employees. Part IV.B will explain how this decision will lead to future conflicts among the Ohio appellate districts. Part IV.C will make a recommendation of how Ohio employers should treat their lactating employees in light of this recent decision. Part V will offer guidance on how to successfully litigate a lactation discrimination case in Ohio. Part V.A will explain why it is important to distinguish breastfeeding from lactation. Part V.B will provide employment law litigators with a strong argument to convince an Ohio court that lactation discrimination is included within the scope of the Ohio Pregnancy Discrimination statute. Part V.C will explore potential legislative initiatives that would provide protection to breastfeeding employees who need to express breast milk at the workplace.
Note, Weaning Ohio Employers off of Lactation Discrimination: The Need for a Clear Interpretation of Ohio's Pregnancy Discrimination Act following Allen v. Totes/Isotoner Corp., 59 Clev. St. L. Rev. 265 (2011)