To celebrate the Pregnancy Discrimination Act turning 40, Senator Tammy Duckworth just had a baby. Well, sort of. Since she’s the first senator to ever give birth while in office, it seems like a fitting celebration for a law that’s been on the books since before most pregnant women were born.
Because the law is so old, you would think most businesses would understand it inside and out. But even Walmart, one of the nation’s largest employers, is in the midst of a pregnancy discrimination suit.
The law, apparently, isn’t super easy for all businesses to follow.
Here are the most common mistakes small businesses make with pregnant employees—and how to steer clear of them.
To keep reading, click here: Your Employee Is Pregnant—Here Are 5 Mistakes You Don’t Want to Make
7 thoughts on “Your Employee Is Pregnant—Here Are 5 Mistakes You Don’t Want to Make”
It would be helpful to discuss the overlap between the PDA and FMLA.
That is true!
If employee and employer are covered by FMLA then that statute usually takes care of leave protections for pregnancy and childbirth but otherwise the employee falls under just the PDA. Problems arise when leave is improperly denied because PDA and FMLA have different remedy structures. Add to that state laws prohibiting sex discrimination and expanding family and medical leave and this can become complicated in a hurry.
The answer to this question is complex because there are two different leave considerations at issue – (1) the leave while the employee is on bed rest and (2) any leave the employee may be entitled to after the baby is born – and it implicates the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), the Pregnancy Discrimination Act (PDA), and, potentially, the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), in addition to whatever state laws may apply in your jurisdiction. Furthermore, employers are advised to tread very carefully in this situation, and those like it, because the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) recently brought renewed focus on the issues of discrimination against pregnant women and caregivers.
It’s worth noting that if you have enough employees, and some of them are exempt the mother’s room is legally required. That is, you are required by law to provide a place for a woman who wishes to, to pump and it MUST NOT be the bathroom.
Your reference to FTEs for Title VII compliance is incorrect. COBRA is the only statute that uses FTEs to determine compliance. Compliance with Title VII and all other employment laws is based on head-count.
Thanks! You are right. I’ll get that fixed.
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