BMF Media has been sued by a female executive there—Ashley Berg--who alleges she was demoted after informing higher-ups that she was pregnant.
Yeah, the higher-ups were men. In this day and age, some guys are still clueless, I guess, assuming the accusations hold up through the legal proceeding, which was initiated in U.S. District Court in New York in February by Berg.
“No woman should ever have to choose between receiving the job promotion she has worked hard to earn, and becoming pregnant and starting a family,” Berg stated in her complaint, which was amended today after other women at BMF, the New York based media agency came forward with their own discrimination complaints.
The amended complaint notes the example of one female executive who has “courageously come forward” to tell of being interviewed by BMF chief operating officer Eric Brunman (one of the named defendants in the suit) for the position of senior vice president of creative strategy at BMF in the fall of 2017.
“Not only did Mr. Brunman ask this woman wholly inappropriate questions about whether she had children or planned to become pregnant anytime soon, but shockingly said to her, ‘if we do move forward [with hiring you to join BMF], we would need you to promise that you will wait a year to have a baby because we need someone to give us runway and show that they are fully committed to the job and can give their full attention to the position.’ Not surprisingly, after Mr. Brunman was told by this female executive that it was wrong for him to be making these types of statements and warnings to her, Mr. Brunman merely laughed and said, in sum and substance, ‘you are probably right.’
Geez, it sounds like the lunkheads running this operation would have a tube-tying clause in all the contracts offered to women if they thought they could get away with it.
That said, so far only the plaintiff has been heard from. No doubt BMF will vigorously defend the case. Can’t wait to see how they respond, probably in the next 45 days or so.
In addition to BMF the corporate entity and Brunman, partners Brian Feit, Bruce Starr and Ed Starr were also named in the suit.