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.
Here’s one thing all pregnant working women in the United States now have in every State in the Union, and that’s the right not to be treated differently, not to experience hostility, backlash, a diminution, a degradation to the terms or the conditions or the privileges of your employment because of your pregnancy, because of your childbirth, or because of a related medical condition.
If you’re struggling with work-related, pregnancy related challenges while you’re working, just understand that it is illegal even if your employer doesn’t know it. And don’t give up, don’t despair.
Your company must have a conversation with you about your needs when you’re pregnant, and it has to “reasonably accommodate” you – that’s the phrase for having a little flexibility when you are pregnant.
Pregnancy discrimination in the workplace is illegal, but it happens all the time. So you need to be proactive. It’s not as if your company’s gonna grow a heart, all of a sudden.
If your company doesn’t correct what they are doing that is discriminatory toward you as a result of your pregnancy, which is inseparable from who you are as a woman obviously, you wanna be in a position where they would have to make you happy in the separation. If you have to get a divorce from your company, you want to be able to leave with your head held high, and your shoulders squared.
It’s the law, it’s the federal law if your employer has 15 employees, and if you work, depending on where you work, if you work in New York State, four employees. But chances are, if you work for an employer with at least 15 employees, you’re covered and it’s illegal when your employer disciplines you, or fires you because of their no-fault policy when you are pregnant.
If you work for a small employer in Connecticut, and your employer isn’t being flexible with you during your pregnancy, isn’t allowing you to sit down occasionally, or to take time to go to doctors, or to take a maternity leave; or when you come back from maternity leave, to express milk at work for your baby – all of this is now required by the Connecticut Human Rights Law with regard to your sex and your pregnancy.
If you are returning from maternity leave and you are breastfeeding your baby, you are definitely entitled to pump milk, to express milk in your workplace, and your employer must accommodate that need.
If You’re Pregnant and Struggling to Work Your Employer Must Accommodate Your Needs By Jack Tuckner, Esq. Ever since the…