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What rights do pregnant women have at work?

On Behalf of | Jul 28, 2023 | Workplace Discrimination |

Pregnancy is often a wonderful time for expecting mothers and their loved ones, but it can also come with quite a few complications, particularly in the workplace. That is why there are federal laws in place that prohibit pregnancy discrimination in all its forms.

It is crucial for workers to understand these laws to ensure their employers adhere to important rules and regulations. This guide explains what to look for when it comes to your rights as a pregnant worker.

Identifying pregnancy discrimination at work

The Pregnancy Discrimination Act of 1978 forbids certain actions aimed at pregnant people in the workplace. For instance, employers cannot base promotions and raises on a person’s pregnancy status or refuse to hire someone simply because they are pregnant.

Pregnant women must also receive the same opportunities as the rest of the staff. For instance, employers must provide benefits, such as health insurance, regardless of a person’s pregnancy. Federal law also prohibits employers from offering assignments to pregnant workers due to their pregnancy status.

Employer obligations

In the event a pregnant woman must go on medical leave, her employer must retain their position for the same amount of time as they would for other forms of sick leave. In the same respect, workplaces must allow pregnant workers to perform their job duties for as long as it’s possible to do so.

In the event an employer does violate laws related to pregnancy and employment, the worker is within her right to file a complaint. Additionally, the employer cannot retaliate against the worker for taking advantage of her rights.