The EEOC filed a lawsuit last week against Estée Lauder over its parental leave policy, saying it doesn’t allow fathers the same parental leave as mothers, and is thus in violation of the law. Estée Lauder has several leave policies for employees, including maternity, adoption, primary caregiver and secondary caregiver leave. Fathers are only eligible for secondary caregiver leave while mothers who give birth are automatically entitled to maternity leave.
Because mothers get several more weeks than fathers and are entitled to a transition back to work benefit, the EEOC alleges that fathers have “lesser benefits” and fewer opportunities to bond with a newborn.
This is an issue that is sure to be addressed with more regularity in the future, as more dads seek to take time off after the birth of a child.