When Derek Rotondo, a seven-year investigator with JPMorgan Chase, asked to take the company’s 16-week paid parental leave, he was told that “only mothers are automatically considered to be primary caregivers.”
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But now, thanks to a gender-discrimination complaint he filed in June 2017 with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, that policy has changed.
The complaint resulted in a “first-of-its kind” class-action settlement on Thursday, in which the bank agreed to pay $5 million to about 5,000 fathers who allege they were denied the opportunity to take appropriate paid parental leave as primary caregivers between 2011 and 2017. The American Civil Liberties Union, workers’ rights law firm Outten & Golden LLP, and JPMorgan Chase announced the tentative settlement.
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To be clear, just days after Rotondo filed his EEOC complaint, Chase granted him the full 16 weeks of caregiver leave. The company also clarified its policy in Dec. 2017 to make sure that there was gender neutral access to paid parental leave.
In the federal settlement, which was filed Thursday in U.S. District Court in Ohio, JPMorgan Chase also agreed to maintain the current gender-neutral parental leave policy and to train those administering it on its gender-neutral application. The company’s associate general counsel, Reid Broda, on Thursday thanked Rotondo for “bringing this matter to our attention.”