Introduction Follows Release of New Report: “Long Overdue”
WASHINGTON, D.C.—On the heels of the release of A Better Balance’s new report “Long Overdue,” U.S. Reps. Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.), John Katko (R-N.Y.), Jaime Herrera Beutler (R-W.A.), Lucy McBath (D-G.A.), and Bobby Scott (D-VA) today introduced the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act (PWFA). Our report found more than two-thirds of women needing accommodations while pregnant lost their court cases under the Pregnancy Discrimination Act even after the 2015 Supreme Court case Young v. UPS. While states are stepping in—with 25 states and five cities requiring certain employers to provide some form of pregnancy accommodations—a uniform law is overdue: the federal Pregnant Workers Fairness Act (PWFA).
“A federal PWFA will ensure that pregnant workers across the country, particularly those in low-wage and physically demanding jobs, are able to stay on the job and have a healthy pregnancy,” said Dina Bakst, Co-Founder and Co-President of A Better Balance. “While A Better Balance has been proud to help move pregnancy discrimination laws forward in several states, no woman should face a lottery between a healthy pregnancy and her job because of where she lives. A bipartisan federal PWFA will end the patchwork of statewide laws and make it clear that any pregnant worker deserves reasonable job modifications.”
A Better Balance has been at the forefront of the pregnancy accommodation movement since 2012, working with federal lawmakers to draft the PWFA, leading a coalition of advocates, and providing extensive support to state campaigns across the country with legislative drafting, testimony, technical assistance, and outreach and education.
The PWFA would specifically require an employer to make a reasonable accommodation for pregnancy, childbirth, and related medical conditions, unless this creates an undue hardship on the employer. Examples of reasonable accommodations might include more frequent restroom breaks or light duty for those with lifting restrictions.
Note to media: A Better Balance can connect reporters with clients who have experienced pregnancy discrimination firsthand.
About A Better Balance
A Better Balance is a national legal advocacy organization dedicated to promoting fairness in the workplace and has been a leader at the national, state, and local level in advancing the rights of pregnant workers and caregivers in the workplace through legislative advocacy, strategic litigation, and public education.
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Melanie Fonder Kaye