Across the country, pregnant women face discrimination in the workplace when their employers refuse to make adjustments to their job duties such as honoring lifting restrictions, allowing them to stay off high ladders, or even just letting them go to the bathroom to vomit.
The Pregnancy Discrimination Act (PDA) outlawed this type of discrimination in 1978 with its requirement that employers treat pregnant workers the same as those who are “similar in their ability or inability to work.” But too many lower courts have misinterpreted the PDA, holding incorrectly that it permits employers to provide accommodations to workers with disabilities or on-the-job injuries but deny those accommodations to pregnant workers.
That is where the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act comes in. This commonsense legislation was reintroduced in Congress today by lead co-sponsors, Senators Casey and Shaheen and Representative Nadler. The Pregnant Workers Fairness Act would require employers to provide reasonable accommodations to pregnant workers unless doing so would impose an undue hardship.
Another great article on the act and why it is needed can be found on the Huffington Post.
When Shelly (not her real name) became pregnant, she was working two jobs in Indiana to support her family: the overnight shift stocking shelves for a major national retail chain and the day shift packing items to ship for a medical supply company. Her doctor advised her not to lift more than 20 pounds. The medical supply company immediately accommodated these restrictions, but the major national retailer refused to modify her duties. She experienced a lot of pain while doing the heavy lifting and miscarried shortly thereafter.
Ready to take action? Respond to the MomsRising Call to Action Here