Wednesday, July 30, 2014

The 8 Inalienable Rights of Pregnant Women

In 1978 the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission or the EEOC passed the Pregnancy Discrimination Act which put into law that firing or not hiring a woman simply because she is pregnant is illegal and is punishable.

Apparently some businesses still do not understand the ramifications of their actions if they in fact fire or refuse to hire someone because of their pregnancy status. 

CNNMoney put out an article on summarizing the Pregnancy Discrimination Act of 1978. The article found that within the fiscal year, “government agencies received 5,370 charges alleging pregnancy discrimination in the workplace”

CNN listed 8 inalienable rights of pregnant women: 

1. An employer cannot fire a woman because she's pregnant
2. A company cannot refuse to hire a woman because she's pregnant -- or because she may become pregnant in the future
3. New mothers have the right to pump breast milk at work in a safe place. A company cannot fire or discriminate against a woman because she's lactating
4. In some cases, pregnancy-related conditions may entitle women to special accommodations
5. An employer cannot force you to take time off or change jobs, if you're still able to do your job
6. Non-medical leave must be equally available to both women and men
7. You can't be harassed based on pregnancy, childbirth or related conditions
8. You cannot be fired for having an abortion or considering having an abortion

The most common complaint was that employers fired the workers for being pregnant.  One of the interesting points of the article is that even if an employer wants to limit a pregnant worker from doing dangerous, toxic, or hard jobs and have them switch to an easier job, the employer cannot make that decision for the pregnant worker.  Changing jobs within the company can only be initiated by the pregnant worker herself or her doctor.   

The article as stirred up quite a bit of opinions so we would like to hear your opinion on the matter.  Do you think there is still pregnancy discrimination out there today? Have you ever been discriminated when you are pregnant? Have you ever had an employer ask you about your plans for becoming pregnant? 

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