Exciting news: the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act is going into effect this month, extending critical new rights to pregnant and postpartum workers across the country who have long been calling for these urgent protections!
When Denizer Carter was 5 months pregnant and working as a cashier in a grocery store, her doctor recommended that she not lift anything over 15 pounds and be switched to lighter duty to maintain the health of her pregnancy – but Denizer’s employer denied the request and fired her. Visibly pregnant, it was impossible for her to find a new job. She faced severe financial hardship, and almost lost her home – just at the time when she was welcoming her new baby.
At A Better Balance, we fought tirelessly alongside advocates like Denizer for over 10 years to pass a new national law that will ensure no pregnant worker ever has to experience what she did. The Pregnant Workers Fairness Act passed Congress and was signed by President Biden in December, and it was an honor to work alongside partners, worker advocates, and legislative champions on one of the biggest wins for workers in decades.
When the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act goes into effect on June 27th, it will be a game changer for millions of people across the country – but workers must understand their new rights under the law in order to exercise them.
Here are the top 5 things you need to know about the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act:
1. It protects pregnant & postpartum workers in every state in the U.S.
2. It applies to all kinds of workers across industries — retail, office, restaurants, factories, schools, government, and more – as long as you work for an employer with 15+ employees.
3. The law guarantees reasonable accommodations, or temporary changes, to allow you to stay healthy and working.
4. If necessary for your health, you can receive accommodations like time off to recover from childbirth, light duty, remote work, equipment like a stool to sit on, flexible scheduling for medical appointments, and more.
5. Your employer cannot retaliate against you for making these requests.
Every working person across the country should know about these important new protections. That’s why we’ve launched a brand new, complete Know Your Rights guide with a user-friendly explainer about the law for workers, sample letters workers can send to their employers when they need to use the law, and links to additional resources and support in English and Spanish. We hope you’ll join us in sharing it with your friends, colleagues, and networks so that people are aware of these new critical protections.