According to data from the U.S. Equal Opportunity Commission, 3,174 women made a claim against their employer for pregnancy discrimination in 2017. Despite the fact that pregnancy is considered a protected class under the Pregnancy Discrimination Act of 1978, some employers still don’t understand that their pregnant employees are entitled to certain rights. If you or a loved one is either currently pregnant or a new mother, knowing your rights can help protect you in the event of workplace discrimination.
- Employers cannot fire you for being pregnant, even if they disguise it as a concern. Employment attorneys in Philadelphia know that sometimes, employers may disguise their desire to lay off a pregnant employee by claiming that they are concerned for the safety of the baby or the mother. Make no mistake; this is still an illegal practice, even if a job involves working with toxic chemicals or operating machinery.
- A company cannot fire or demote an employee because she is lactating. A provision to the Affordable Care Act requires that employers who currently have over 50 employees provide new mothers with a private space to pump breast milk if she is lactating. It is illegal for an employer to fire a new mother because she is lactating.
- Employers cannot refuse to hire an employee because she is pregnant or may become pregnant. Some employers believe that they will lose money by hiring a woman who will, in the future, take maternity leave. Other employers believe that hiring a younger woman will leave them looking to fill the position in a few months, as she chooses to focus on her family. In both cases, the law is clear about this type of sexism: It is illegal for hiring managers and employers to discriminate against pregnant candidates or candidates who may become pregnant.
- Employees who choose to have an abortion are protected. Under the Pregnancy Discrimination Act, it is illegal for an employer to fire, demote, or otherwise penalize a woman for having or considering to have an abortion.
Workplace discrimination attorneys in Philadelphia know that pregnant women still face hiring and employment stigmas. If you think you may be the victim of workplace discrimination, call Kozloff Stoudt Attorneys today at 610-370-6700 to discuss your case.