About 82% of pregnant women continue working until within one month of their birth. Crucial protections, like the Pregnancy Discrimination Act, have enabled more women to continue working while pregnant without the concern of being forced to leave their jobs. However, pregnancy discrimination still persists, and reports illustrate it has risen dramatically in the last 15 years.
More than 250,000 women a year are denied reasonable accommodations by their employer for pregnancy, childbirth, or related medical conditions. Pregnant women are often denied common sense accommodations like longer rest periods, stools at cash registers, or temporary reassignment to other tasks. Many new mothers are denied designated locations for expressing milk. This discrimination falls most heavily on women of color and those working low-wage jobs. Despite only comprising 14.3% of female workers, Black women filed 28.6% of pregnancy discrimination charges.
Lack of fair accommodations during pregnancy and soon after birth have real consequences. Expecting mothers are forced to risk miscarriage, experience improper physical recovery, and are denied critical time to bond with their infants. To ensure the safety of pregnant workers, we must follow the lead of the 27 states that have passed legislation like the Pregnant Worker Fairness Act. This legislation ensures reasonable workplace accommodations for those whose ability to work is limited by pregnancy and childbirth.
No woman should have to place her or her child’s health at risk to keep her job. No woman should feel forced to choose between dedicated motherhood or continuing her career. Both are possible, and our laws have to support and protect pregnant women from discrimination. Fundamentally, we must recognize that if we fail to protect pregnancy in the workplace, we jeopardize both the health and well-being of pregnant workers and that of their future children and families. By recognizing the rights of pregnant workers, we can build a safer workforce, and stronger, healthier families.
Join the fight
Problems to be Solved
- Workers experience discrimination due to pregnancy.
- Employers are not accommodating the physical abilities or limitations of pregnant workers.
- Employers are placing the health of pregnant workers and their children at risk to meet employer demands.
I have seen first hand the inequities in the business world where women are concerned, particularly in startups and entrepreneurship. We have to do more at every step. We have to empower women with the economic freedom to improve their own situations.
- Ensure pregnant workers are treated equally and fairly
As President, I will...
- Support legislation like the Pregnant Worker Fairness Act, that guarantees pregnant workers reasonable accommodations that would allow them to continue working while maintaining healthy pregnancies.
- Encourage states to continue to pass anti-discrimination pregnancy laws until we pass a federal mandate.
- Implement a comprehensive federal Paid Family Leave plan that provides the ability for all families, regardless of make up, the time to heal and bond with their child.