is this maternity discrimination?
This is a unionized environment. The situation involves a pregnant permanent part-time employee applying to an internal posting for a permanent full-time vacancy of the same job. The posting closes, this employee is the most senior that applied and should be offered the full time position. In between the time the posting closes and before she is formally offered the position, she goes into labour, has the child prematurely and is currently in hospital. Now the employer is saying she is "not fit to work" because she is on pregnancy/maternity leave and so will offer her the position with a start date of whenever she returns from said leave. What this means is that the employee will still be considered part time while on leave which means no health and welfare benefits that come with a full time position and could affect her seniority. But for the fact that she had the baby when she did, she would have been offered and accepted the full time position and had full benefits throughout her maternity leave and been enrolled in the pension plan.
To me this doesn't seem right but given the uniqueness of the situation I am having a hard time finding any relevant information or case law online. This will obviously be going through the unions grievance procedure but I'm curious if anyone has thoughts or had a similar experience. Thanks.