A model claims she was fired from her job with Hyundai for being on her period.
27-year-old Rachel Rickert was working at the New York International Auto Show last month, greeting guests at the Hyundai booth, but was reportedly told she couldn’t take a toilet break for three hours.
That didn’t allow Rickert to change her tampon and as a result she soiled her clothes - a black dress and black tights.
She told her talent rep Erika Seifred that she would need a change of clothes and time to clean up.
Seifred, however, said that Hyundai wanted Rickert to go home because of her “period situation,” according to her US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission complaint.
As she was being paid by the hour, Rickert wanted to carry on working. She protested but was told to go home.
Two days later, Seifred called Rickert and told her she was being fired “because Hyundai heard about Ms. Rickert having her menstrual cycle and they didn’t want Ms. Rickert representing the company anymore,” according to the EEOC complaint.
It was a huge shock: "She called me and pretty much told me that Hyundai didn’t want me representing them anymore at the show because they got word of my menstrual cycle," Rickert told the New York Post.
"You’re not a robot. You have to use the bathroom especially when you’re on your period. They just act like we’re not human. I’m not going to be ashamed or shamed of having my period," she said.
Rickert had expected to earn $5,000 from the show but says she hasn’t been paid at all.
"I’m not going to let someone tell me I can’t have my period when I work. It’s unacceptable," she said.
And her attorney Mark Shirian added: "Discrimination of any kind, especially because of a menstrual cycle, should not be tolerated."
The EEOC complaint is against Hyundai and Seifred's management firm, Experiential Talent.
Sefreid declined to comment but a representative from Hyundai told The Independent: "We take any complaint like this seriously and will respond appropriately once we have a chance to investigate the merits of the claim."
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