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The Washington Post Covers Attorney Debra D'Agostino's Pregnancy Retaliation Case

Written by: Federal Practice Group
Written by: Federal Practice Group

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The Washington Post recently reported on the ongoing problem of workplace discrimination against pregnant employees, including one of Attorney D’Agostino’s cases. In that particular retaliation claim, a DIA spy won her case against superiors who violated the Pregnancy Discrimination Act.


A significant retaliation claim handled by Attorney Debra D'Agostino was recently covered by the Washington Post. The article—focusing on discriminatory workplace actions against pregnant employees—recounts the case of DIA spy whose superiors violated the federal Pregnancy Discrimination Act.

The spy, known as "Roxanne" in the piece, was chosen for a 14-week training course before taking on a high-paying assignment overseas. However, Roxanne told her superiors that she would be near her due date in the final weeks of that training, which mostly consisted of physical training (defensive driving and hostage scenarios).

Roxanne's news caused hand-wringing among her superiors and one, records show, even thought she would have trouble navigating staircases. A seasoned spy, however, Roxanne knew that she could handle the physical training mere months after the birth of her child. DIA officials refused to let Roxanne stagger her training and instead pushed all of her training back to later session four months later. Roxanne agreed to this arrangement—but when she reported for the later session, she discovered that her superiors hadn't enrolled her in it.


Knowing that she had been discriminated against, Roxanne filed an Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) complaint and hired Attorney D'Agostino to handle the claim. The EEOC determined that Roxanne had, in fact, been retaliated against for her pregnancy by the DIA.

The EEOC decision was significant: the DIA was ordered to pay Roxanne as if she had assumed the high-paying position at her original start date and the intelligence agency bosses were forced to submit to harassment training. The EEOC ruling also had to be posted in Roxanne's former DIA office in the Middle East/Africa.

This is not the first time that Attorney D'Agostino has had to defend the employment rights of pregnant federal workers. She told the Washington Post that, when she does, the supervisors in these discrimination cases often "sound like they're from another decade."

You can read all "Working while pregnant: To some employers, that’s apparently still a big problem" and more about Attorney D'Agostino's victory here.

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