JPMorgan Chase will pay $5 million to resolve allegations its parental leave policy discriminated against men, according to HuffPost.
Derek Rotondo, a fraud investigator at the bank’s Columbus, Ohio, office, initiated the class-action suit in 2017 after he was denied the 16 weeks of paid time JPMorgan offers primary caretakers.
Rotondo claimed the bank told him he would have to prove his wife was incapacitated or had no choice but to return to work to qualify.
The $5 million settlement will be divided among any male employees who were denied or discouraged from “primary caregiver” leave between 2011 and 2017. Depending on how many such employees come forward, this could mean between $837 and $5,862 per claimant, according to Peter Romer-Friedman, counsel at Outten & Golden, which co-represented Rotondo with the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU).
“While sixteen weeks of parental leave is quite generous, and we wish more companies would follow Chase’s lead, caregiving leave must also be offered on an equal basis to men and women,” said Galen Sherwin, senior staff attorney with the ACLU’s Women’s Rights Project.
“Unfortunately, the gender stereotype that raising children is a woman’s job is still prevalent, and is reflected in far too many corporate policies. We are pleased that Chase is committed to ensuring that its parental leave system meets the needs of today’s families.”
“We are pleased to have reached an agreement in this matter and look forward to more effectively communicating the policy so that all men and women employees are aware of their benefits,” Reid Broda, associate general counsel at the bank, said in a statement. “We thank Mr. Rotondo for bringing the matter to our attention.”