Belgian Women Encounter Workplace Discrimination

There is a growing feeling among many people in Europe that old fashioned discrimination against women or gays belongs to the past and in the modern world there increasingly is a commitment to equality regardless of race, age, gender or ethnicity. However, a recent report from the Institute For Equality Between Men And Women(IEBMWW) reveals the number of claims of workplace discrimination based on pregnancy has doubled in the past year. More pregnant women are facing old fashioned discrimination because of their decision to have a child and remain working. In one out of seven reported cases, discrimination was directly linked to issues relating to pregnancy, giving birth or motherhood.

According to Patrick Verraes of IEBMWW, many employers simply ignore the law and proceed with their discriminatory practices. “They don’t want to incur extra costs by taking on a replacement and assume that a woman with children is less focussed on her job.” he believes there is need for additional legislation to combat discrimination against women who seek to work and have a family.

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