47 S.M.U. L. Rev. 425 (1993-1994)
Discrimination in the Workplace: Are Men and Women Not Entitled to the Same Parental Leave Benefits under Title VII

handle is hein.journals/smulr47 and id is 441 raw text is: DISCRIMINATION IN THE WORKPLACE:
ARE MEN AND WOMEN NOT
ENTITLED TO THE SAME PARENTAL
LEAVE BENEFITS UNDER
TITLE VII?
Kathryn Frueh Patterson
I. INTRODUCTION
MERICAN society has changed significantly in the last decade.
Traditional families comprised of a working father and a home-
maker mother are no longer commonplace. Increasing numbers of
men desire, or are forced, to assume a more active role in the rearing of their
children. Consequently, employers and legislatures are beginning to debate
and address men's rights to parental leave.
This comment addresses whether providing male and female employees
with different parental leave benefits violates Title VII of the Civil Rights
Act of 1964 (Title VII).I The first part of the comment provides an overview
of the applicable legislation and case law concerning the right of a member
of a majority group, such as a white male, to sue under the Civil Rights
Act.2 This right is limited by court sanctioned affirmative action plans.3
The comment then specifically addresses case law pertaining to employer-
provided maternity leave in the United States.4
In determining whether women are given better leave benefits than men
upon the birth of a child, time off to care for the child must be distinguished
from leave to allow the woman to recover from childbirth. As only women
are disabled from childbirth, leave given to women during the recovery pe-
riod, but denied to men, should not be considered preferential treatment.
The second section of the comment addresses what is considered to be the
period of disability after giving birth to a child.5 This period is compared to
the typical amount of leave offered to men and women by employers.6
The third section addresses policy considerations behind requiring equal
1. 42 U.S.C. § 2000e (1988); see also infra notes 15 and 42.
2. See infra notes 13-31 and accompanying text.
3. See infra notes 32-33 and accompanying text.
4. See infra notes 34-42 and accompanying text.
5. See infra parts III.A.-B.
6. See infra part III.C.

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