BOISE, Idaho — The case of a woman who sued a Nampa Home Depot claiming she was denied breaks to breast feed has been settled.
The Idaho Press reports Randi Allred, who filed the lawsuit in November 2017, worked at Home Depot for four years, including in Meridian and Nampa, before she felt compelled to quit, citing intolerable work conditions.
On June 28, U.S. District Judge B. Lynn Winmill ruled in favor of Home Depot’s motion for summary judgement, finding there was not sufficient evidence to proceed to a jury trial.
Allred’s attorney, Shelly Cozakos filed a motion to reconsider the case shortly after the ruling. According to the U.S. District’s electronic records website, the case was settled Oct. 1. Details about the settlement are not available.
Cozakos and Home Depot could not immediately be reached for a comment.
Shortly after that motion to reconsider, a 19-page brief in support of Allred’s motion for reconsideration came from the American Civil Liberties Union and University of California Hastings College of the Law Center for WorkLife Law.
“This Court’s determination of the rights and obligations of employers and their breastfeeding employees will reverberate well beyond the instant case, and it is this broader impact that has led to the filing of this brief,” the brief states.
Home Depot’s refusal to provide Allred with the minor job modification she needed affected the terms and conditions of her employment within the Civil Rights Act, the brief claimed.
According to Allred’s complaint, Allred’s child was diagnosed with soy and cow milk allergies and needed to be breast-fed. The lawsuit claimed Home Depot management did not allow Allred to take breaks to pump her breast milk even though she provided her supervisor with a medical note that recommended the breaks. Allred said her manager at the time, Josh Hazlett, scheduled her for 10-hour shifts, seven days a week. Despite several attempts to negotiate, Allred said in her complaint that Hazlett refused to accommodate her need for regular breaks, which the lawsuit said was a violation of the Pregnancy Discrimination Act.
Winmill wrote in his 40-page decision that “even though the Court finds that there is sufficient direct evidence to conclude that discrimination occurred,” Allred failed to show that she was constructively discharged.
Winmill determined that Allred failed to provide sufficient facts that a “reasonable juror could conclude that the working conditions became so intolerable that a reasonable person would have to quit,” according to his written decision.
The brief in support of Allred said a reasonable jury could find her working conditions intolerable for a person in her position — a breastfeeding woman who was in pain for weeks, “subject to ridicule, and with a diminished milk supply jeopardizing the ability to continue nursing a newborn.”
With a settlement being reached though, the motion for reconsideration was vacated.
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