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Lucasfilm Found Guilty of Pregnancy Discrimination

Filmmaker George Lucas
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Filmmaker George Lucas
 

Score one for working mothers.

Shortly after noon on Wednesday, a jury in Marin found that Lucasfilm Ltd. committed pregnancy discrimination and wrongful termination by rescinding a job offer after learning the candidate was pregnant. 

Julie Gilman Veronese, the plaintiff, broke down in tears when the verdict was returned, the Marin Independent Journal reported. “People don’t think that pregnant women have the right to work and this sends a huge message,” said Angela Alioto, the victim’s attorney, who is also her mother-in-law

During the trial, George Lucas was forced to take the stand, although he testified that he’d never heard of Veronese until she filed the lawsuit.

The case included damning e-mail messages. In one, Sarita Patel, Lucas’s estate manager, confided to another employee that she was “afraid to bring on a pregnant person."

Veronese testified that Patel asked her during her job interview whether she planned to have children, saying: “I know I ask inappropriate questions, but I need to know.” Patel confirmed on the stand that she had asked such “inappropriate” questions, which are in fact illegal.

The jury limited damages to $113,830 for past economic losses. Lucasfilm plans to appeal the verdict.

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