Chadwick v. Wellpoint, Inc.: A Case Analysis
CHADWICK v. WELLPOINT, INC.
The facts of case concerning Chadwick v. Wellpoint, Inc. are as follows. Laurie Chadwick had seven years experience as a Recovery Specialist and an excellent rating of 4.40 of 5.0 on her job performance. Laurie Chadwick applied to be a “Team Lead.” Laurie Chadwick was denied the promotion in favor of another woman in the company who had one year of experience as a Recovery Specialist and a job performance rating of 3.84. At the time of the promotion decision, Laurie Chadwick was the mother of an 11-year-old son and three six-year-old triplets. The issue of this case asked, “Did Wellpoint violate Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 by denying a promotion to Chadwick based on a sex-based stereotype that a mother with young children ...view middle of the document...
” The court concluded that the employer’s statement of, “It was nothing you did or didn’t do,” would lead a jury to believe that the decision was not based on Chadwick’s job performance. The employer had stated, “…you’re going to school, you have kids, and you just have a lot on your plate right now.” This statement would lead the jury to believe that the employer denied the promotion based on an assumption that Chadwick would not be able to fulfill her job responsibilities based on the fact that she is a woman with four children. This reasoning was supported by the fact that the employer learned of Chadwick’s children two months prior to the promotion. Nanci Miller, the decision maker, responded with, “Bless you,” after learning of Chadwick’s three six-year-old triplets. The court believed this could be interpreted as an assumption that Chadwick’s life must be difficult. Also, the employer gave an explanation for the denial of the promotion in a deposition stating that Chadwick performed poorly in the interview rather than the explanation of “you’ve got a lot on your plate right now.” The court believed Wellpoint, Inc. would not have denied the position to a man because he “had a lot on his plate.”
I agree with the court’s ruling. If Wellpoint learned that a male employee had four children, I do not believe the statement of, “Bless you,” would have been given. Based on the stereotype of roles within the family, the husband works while the wife cares for the children. In this case, the same stereotype applies. I define the statement of, “Bless you,” to say, “You poor woman. How hard you must be working to care for four children.” The employer makes the assumption that Chadwick’s husband is not a caregiver within the family and thus believes that Chadwick may be unable to fulfill her job duties being the only caregiver in the home.