Legal News

The EU Court of Justice held that failure to carry out an individual risk assessment for a breastfeeding mother in accordance with the Pregnant Workers Directive was direct sex discrimination.

In Ramos v Servicio Galego de Saúde ( Ms Ramos was a nurse in an A&E unit. She told her employer she was breastfeeding and asked for adjustments because her work was liable to have an adverse effect on her milk. The employer considered her job risk free.

The ECJ held that Article 4(1) of the Pregnant Workers Directive (reflected in Article 16 of the Management Regulations) required a specific assessment taking into account her individual situation. A generic risk assessment of breast feeding mothers in her role was not enough.

Also failure to conduct an individual risk assessment in accordance with Article 4(1) constituted direct discrimination on grounds of sex under the Equal Treatment Directive.

More: Pregnancy and maternity under health & safety regulations>Breastfeeding.