Officer sues Ocean Township Police Department over denial of light-duty during pregnancy

Officer Kate Delanoy asked for light-duty when she was expecting in April 2011. Her lawsuit claims her police chief told her light-duty was not available for pregnant officers, even though other officers with illnesses and injuries were granted desk jobs. (5/5/14)

OCEAN TOWNSHIP - An officer is suing the Ocean Township Police Department claiming she was discriminated against when she was pregnant.

Officer Kate Delanoy asked for light-duty when she was expecting in April 2011. Her lawsuit claims her police chief told her light-duty was not available for pregnant officers, even though other officers with illnesses and injuries were granted desk jobs.

Months later, Delanoy was granted light-duty, but only after a new maternity policy and a separate light-duty policy were written. According to the policy, pregnant officers have to use all their accrued sick, personal and vacation time before their due date to reduce the length of their light-duty. That requirement could be waived for other officers seeking desk jobs under the light-duty policy.

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The Ocean Township Police Department came under public scrutiny in 2008, when a pregnant patrolwoman asked for a desk job and was denied. The department eventually granted her light-duty and vowed to change its policy.

Delanoy’s lawsuit claims that her civil rights were violated. It also claims the Americans with Disabilities Act was violated.

News 12 reached out to the township manager and the police department for comment but they did not respond.

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