Under federal law, since 2010, women returning from maternity leave who are breastfeeding, nursing parents – are entitled to a clean, private, non-restroom, non-bathroom space in which to express milk; to take a break and to lactate on a similar schedule to what your baby would be doing, nursing, if you were home, two or three times a day. Otherwise, it’s very painful, you can develop mastitis, it may interfere permanently with your ability to breastfeed, and it’s illegal.
To treat you equally as a woman, to not permit you to be sexually harassed, to not permit you to be working in an environment that may be hostile to women in general, and you in particular; to ensure that your work environment for the nine months of your pregnancy is flexible, isn’t hostile; that you are able to come back from maternity leave that your employer must provide for you, and they must provide a place for you to express milk after you come back from your maternity leave.
There are at least five principle ways that you can be discriminated against at work based on your pregnancy.
This week’s the 40th anniversary of the Pregnancy Discrimination Act – the 1978 federal law designed and enacted to protect women who become pregnant while working, from being fired while pregnant and working.
If you’re going to have your Rosa Parks moment, make it count. Make sure you document, document, document the complaint, and all follow up to the boss, to the HR department. Whatever happens, put it in writing. Hold their feet to the fire. Stand up for yourself. The Rosa Parks moment, Circa 2018 in the workplace.