Bob has left the building, but his lawsuits follow after him. Former Price is Right host Bob Barker has been hit with a pregnancy discrimination suit by one of the former Price Is Right models, Shane Stirling. Stirling is suing ol' Bob for more than $25,000 in damages for allegedly forcing her into an early pregnancy leave and keeping her off the set until the show had crossed over into new management. She was let go soon after, and is claiming that had she been allowed to return as planned, the firing may not have happened.
Ironically, Stirling is claiming Barker forced the model out of work due to his fear of "liability issues." The biggest liability Barker will now face is the resulting discrimination suit. TMZ reports, the fearful Barker allegedly told Stirling it was "dangerous" for her to work while pregnant.
According to WalletPop, the model's suit states, "The host of the game show had always been very kind and generous to Stirling until he learned that she was pregnant." Cessation of generosity is not actionable, but discrimination based on pregnancy is. As found in the suit against pharmaceutical giant Novartis, gender discrimination can include discrimination in hiring and firing based on whether or not an employee becomes pregnant. Under the Pregnancy Discrimination Act, which is an amendment to Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, discrimination on the basis of pregnancy, childbirth or related medical conditions is unlawful sex discrimination.
According to this law, pregnant employees must be permitted to work as long as they are able to perform their jobs. It will be up to a finder of fact such as a judge, jury, or arbitrator whether or not the pregnant Stirling was still capable of showing off the fine Price is Right merchandise while with child.
It will not be easy for Bob Barker (or his former show) to keep up that family friendly image they were so famous for. According to other reports, Sterling's suit is not the only pregnancy related problem facing Barker. TMZ reports that another of "Barker's Beauties," model Brandi Cochran, is also suing the show, claiming staffers treated her so terribly when she became pregnant, that she had a miscarriage. May we have your bids on the price of this suit please?