Evidence of Discrimination against Others at Your Company May Be Helpful to Your Case

Recently, the Second District Court has ruled in Johnson v. United Cerebral Palsy, 173 Cal.App.4th 740 (2009) on an important issue of admissibility of evidence of discrimination against a number of employees in a discrimination and wrongful termination case brought by a former employee. In that case, a pregnant employee was terminated for allegedly falsifying time records shortly after she notified her supervisor of her pregnancy. The employer defended against pregnancy discrimination allegations by introducing evidence of the claimants substandard job performance as well as falsification of time records on her part.
The court, after pointing out that the timing of termination alone or providing false reasons for termination alone are not sufficient reasons to disprove that the termination was not discriminatory, pointed out that declarations by some employees that the employer fired shortly after they got pregnant, and statements by other employees that the same supervisor made their job far more stressful after they notified him of their pregnancy, in addition to the negative comments that the employer made to the same women about their pregnancy were sufficient evidence to allow the case to be heard in front of the jury.