What is the Pregnancy Discrimination Act of 1978?

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With Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 in effect, more people got access to workplace protections and employers knew that they could not treat people differently based on qualities like race, religion, or national origin. The government found it necessary to add to these protections though, and that is why the Pregnancy Discrimination Act of 1978 was passed. As its name implies, this law ensures that the federal law that protects workers from discrimination also protects pregnant workers. If you think that your workplace has ignored this crucial legislation, then it might be time to talk to a Chesterfield County employment discrimination attorney.

What Does the Pregnancy Discrimination Act Protect Against?

The Pregnancy Discrimination Act is there to protect against any discrimination that a pregnant worker would face at their workplace. If you are an employer, you cannot treat a pregnant employee differently than you would treat any other worker. An employer also cannot discriminate against a pregnant employee for taking advantage of rights that they have under the Fair Labor Standards Act and the Family and Medical Leave Act.

When Should I Report Pregnancy Discrimination?

You should report pregnancy discrimination when there is a pattern of behavior aimed at you or you believe that a decision about your career with your employer has been made due to your pregnancy. An employer cannot let your pregnancy affect their decisions on:

  • Hiring
  • Pay raises
  • Access to more training opportunities
  • Promotions

If you suspect this kind of pregnancy discrimination, it should be reported to your human resources department right away. If that does not go anywhere, keep documenting everything and then make a report to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, also known as the EEOC.

What Should I Do If My Employer Acts Differently After I Report Pregnancy Discrimination?

If you make a report to HR or eventually have to file a complaint with the EEOC, you may find that your employer acts differently towards you. Maybe you get passed over for a promotion you believed you were a top candidate for. Perhaps it seems like your bosses are finding any excuse they can to reprimand you.

This could be textbook retaliation. Title VII protects you against this too. You cannot be discriminated against by your employer because you made a complaint about pregnancy discrimination. An employer who treats you poorly because you exercised your rights under federal or state law can be harshly punished.

Talk to an Employment Lawyer

If you have been discriminated against, you do not have to accept that mistreatment. Contact Passero Employment Law and schedule a consultation. Our experienced employment lawyer can go over your legal options with you.

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