CA operates a disability insurance system; participants pay 1% of their wages into the fund and can receive compensation if disabled.
The insurance system excludes certain disabilities resulting from pregnancy from coverage.
Suit was brought claiming that the exclusion of pregnancy related illnesses from coverage was in violation of Equal Protection.
SCOTUS found no Equal Protection violation, system constitutional.
How should a court determine if a certain provision constitutes gender discrimination?
To determine if a certain provision constitutes gender discrimination, look at how the provision separates the groups. If the two groups are not gender-exclusive, then there is probably no gender discrimination.
The program is totally self-supporting; coverage of pregnancy related disabilities would make the program much more expensive and would require extra funding.
The legislature has chosen not to insure all risks, and this decision is reflected in the level of annual contributions exacted from participating employees.
The legislature may select one phase of one field and apply a remedy there, neglecting the others.
Particularly with respect to social welfare programs, so long as the line drawn by the state is rationally supportable, the courts will not interpose their judgment as to the appropriate stopping point.
The State has a legitimate interest in maintaining the self-supporting nature of its insurance program
There is no evidence in the record that the selection of the risks insured by the program worked to discriminate against any definable group or class in terms of the aggregate risk protection derived by that group or class from the program.
The program divides potential recipients into two groups--pregnant women and non-pregnant women. While the first group is exclusively female, the second includes members of both sexes.
By singling out for less favorable treatment a gender-linked disability peculiar to women, the state has created a double standard for disability compensation:
A limitation is imposed upon the disabilities for which women workers may recover, while men receive full compensation for all disabilities suffered, including those that affect only or primarily males (prostatectomies, circumcision, hemophilia, and gout).
Two ways of proving gender discrimination:
Classification on the face of the law.
Gender-neutral, but discriminatory purpose and impact.
Congress effectively overruled in enacting the Pregnancy Discrimination Act which defined sex discrimination to include pregnancy discrimination.