Offered junior role when returning from maternity leave

January 2023

Heidi* was working as a merchandiser when she became pregnant.

Heidi believed she made an agreement with her employer that she would train a replacement to temporarily cover her position while she left to have her baby and would return to her merchandiser position following her maternity leave.

When Heidi was ready to come back to work, she requested to return to her position on a part-time basis. Her employer offered her a junior role on a casual basis and her replacement was appointed to her merchandiser position on a full-time basis.

Heidi felt that this was because of her pregnancy and her carers responsibilities after giving birth.

Heidi lodged a complaint of sex (pregnancy) discrimination and carers discrimination with ADNSW.

Heidi’s employer did not agree with her version of events and said Heidi resigned at the time she left work to give birth because she was unsure how much time she would need to have off.

Heidi was paid out all her entitlements when she resigned.

Heidi’s employer also said that they wanted her to come back so told her she should apply to see what jobs they had available when she was ready to return to work.

Heidi disputed that she had resigned, although she did not dispute that she had received pay covering her entitlements as per her payslip.

The complaint was resolved at a conciliation conference when Heidi accepted a payment of $4,000 for the general damages she had suffered.

*Name has been changed to protect the privacy of the individual

Last updated:

15 Feb 2023

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