Pregnancy Discrimination

Pregnancy discrimination is a form of sex discrimination, made illegal by Title VII. Employers may not discriminate against employees because of pregnancy, childbirth, or related medical conditions in any aspect of employment, from hiring to firing.

Employers must treat pregnant employees who are temporarily unable to work due to pregnancy just as they treat other employees who are temporarily disabled — no better and no worse. If an employer provides disability leave to employees with serious illnesses, for example, it must provide the same leave to an employee who is temporarily disabled by pregnancy.

This section explains what pregnancy discrimination is and how to protect your rights.

Articles on Pregnancy Discrimination

Is Pregnancy Considered a Disability?
Pregnancy doesn’t qualify as a disability under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), the federal law that prohibits workplace disability discrimination. However, pregnancy discrimination is illegal in its own right. Employers may not make job decisions based on an employee’s pregnancy, and must

Getting a Right To Sue Letter for Pregnancy Discrimination
The federal Pregnancy Discrimination Act (PDA) prohibits employers from discriminating against applicants or employees on the basis of pregnancy, childbirth, or related conditions. If you believe your employer has fired you or otherwise discriminated against you because of your pregnancy, you may want

Questions & Answers

My doctor said I need light duty; does my employer have to provide it?
Question: I work in a warehouse. Part of my job is doing scheduling, tracking shipments, and so on at a computer terminal; part of my job involves physically lifting and moving products. I’m pregnant, and my doctor has said I shouldn’t lift more than 20 pounds. My company has several “light duty” positions,

Resources on Pregnancy Discrimination

Your Rights in the Workplace
The essential resource for employees who want to know their rights — including their right to work free from discrimination.

The Essential Guide to Handling Workplace Harassment and Discrimination
Written for managers and employers, this reference explains how to recognize, handle, and prevent workplace harassment and discrimination.

Equal Employment Opportunity Commission
The website of the federal Equal Employment Opportunity Commission provides information on pregnancy discrimination, filing a charge, and much more.

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