Protection from pregnancy discrimination

On Behalf of | Jan 23, 2020 | Employment Law |

Many women in Ohio want or need to continue working through a pregnancy. A woman knows what she can and cannot do safely while pregnant. Keeping herself and the baby healthy is vital to bringing new life into the world.

Not everyone understands this. An employer may consider pregnancy akin to illness. Managers or coworkers may believe a woman is lazy because she can no longer perform specific duties of the job that were fine before. However, according to the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, a pregnant woman has the legal right to ask for work adjustments. This allows her to perform her job without putting her or the baby’s health at risk under the Pregnancy Discrimination Act.

An expecting mother and her spouse are also protected from discrimination under the PDA. An employer may pass over a pregnant woman or spouse for promotion because his or her baby will be born soon. This type of discrimination may be covered by the PDA or the Family and Medical Leave Act or both. Laws relating to spouses can be more complicated. Those who feel they are facing discrimination may find speaking to a lawyer can help clear up any confusion regarding these laws.

Extra accommodation under the American Disabilities Act

Under Ohio state law, it is illegal to fire a pregnant woman who cannot work or perform certain duties due to pregnancy-related illness. If a woman experiences these medical conditions, she may also be eligible for accommodation under the ADA. Common disabilities associated with pregnancy are conditions like anemia, preeclampsia and gestational diabetes.


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