Should Making Fun Of A Co-Worker's Weight Be Illegal?

Claire Gordon


Deborah Marks was a New York telemarketer, and a damn good one. She received outstanding reviews, a series of prizes, and was named "Telemarketer of the Year." Marks hoped to move into a sales rep position, but when promotion time came, another woman got the job. "Deb, I've told you," her boss allegedly said to her, "outside sales, presentation is extremely important. Lose the weight and you will get promoted." Marks weighed 270 pounds.

Marks filed a lawsuit alleging sex discrimination, because the other woman was chosen for being "thin" and "cute," in her boss' supposed words, and men weren't judged in the same way. She lost her case because she couldn't point to an overweight male salesperson as an example.