Maternity Leave Is Not “Sitting Around on Your Ass”

Sometimes it might feel good to call a coworker a “soul-less [sic] and morally bankrupt ” person. And if that person is a lawyer, you might think that the jokes just write themselves. But nothing good can come out of attacking a lawyer via text for the crime of taking a paid maternity leave.

But that is what happened.

In a LinkedIn post, Kelly Barnett, Senior Vice President, Counsel at AmTrust Financial Services, Inc, shared this story about an unnamed female attorney on LinkedIn. Barnett explained that a female attorney took a maternity leave and during this law firm asked her to perform legal work.

Instead of returning to this law firm, she resigned and moved to a new one. One of her male colleagues, Jon Dileno, sent this outrageous text to the attorney and new mom.

To keep reading, click here: Maternity Leave Is Not “Sitting Around on Your Ass”

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4 thoughts on “Maternity Leave Is Not “Sitting Around on Your Ass”

  1. “Jon Dileno represents employers in the full spectrum of labor and employment matters in both the public and private sector.”

    Well, well, well. Another management-side employment attorney that believes this stuff and acts this way. Not surprised, considering all of the HR people I’ve dealt with that have broken laws when dealing with sexual harassment complaints. Why don’t these people understand and follow the law? Or simple human decency? It’s not that complicated!

    1. Because our society is optimized for machines.

      Look at clothing. Clothing is provided in set sizes and cuts to optimize for manufacturing. It doesn’t fit anyone all that well, but it’s easy for machines to produce.

      Or look at cities. They aren’t optimized for people, but for transportation–cars, mostly.

      Or look at the nature of work. We’ve optimized output from machines, not from people. Look at how scattered most of our communication is, and how many “urgent” distractions we have day-to-day. Optimized communications is good for machines, but humans don’t work optimally under such conditions.

      When you are focused on optimizing specific outcomes it’s easy to run rough-shod over mere humans. Nor is this new–“A Christmas Carol” focuses on this topic, for example, and slavery was this taken to an absurd degree. In many ways we see it as wrong today because we have something to compare it against!

        1. Two things can be true. I never pretended that my answer was exhaustive, merely contributory. Obviously people can be jerks in multiple ways.

          And besides, while our culture focuses on misogyny it’s hardly the only cause for mistreatment of individuals in our society. Optimization for machines rather than people explains a wide array of modes of mistreatment, such as Amazon’s warehouse practices, modern trucking, and the demands of knowledge workers. If we eliminate misogyny but continue to optimize society for machine efficiency rather than human flourishing, we’ll still end up with people being ground to dust by policies that are obviously idiotic when you factor in people. Acknowledging that there’s one serious problem in our standard managerial models doesn’t mean we can’t acknowledge another serious problem.

          In other words, it’s not a competition.

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