Discrimination in the workplace because you are pregnant or nursing your baby is unlawful. Starting or expanding a family with the birth of a child can be the happiest moments in one’s life. Unfortunately, pregnancy discrimination by employers adds unnecessary stressors and can act to ruin an otherwise exciting time in a woman’s life. It is important for expectant and nursing mothers to know and understand their civil rights. Title VII makes it unlawful for an employer to discriminate against any individual with respect to the compensation, terms, conditions, or privileges of employment on the basis of sex. In 1978, Congress expanded the definition of what constitutes discrimination “on the basis of sex” by amending Title VII to include the Pregnancy Discrimination Act (PDA), which prohibits employers from discriminating against employees “on the basis of pregnancy, childbirth, or related medical conditions.” Colorado law takes these protections one step further by requiring that your employer reasonably accommodate your pregnancy by, for instance, providing light duty, alternative assignments, short- and long-term disability leave, or unpaid leave.
Vindicate Your Rights Against Pregnancy Discrimination in the Workplace
At Rathod | Mohamedbhai LLC, our team of trial attorneys understand the law associated with workplace discrimination based on pregnancy, childbirth, and nursing. Discrimination based on physical conditions associated with pregnancy may be protected by the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). It is unlawful to harass or single out a woman because of her pregnancy or childbirth. The PDA prohibits employers from discriminating against employees on the basis of medical conditions related to pregnancy that occur after the actual pregnancy. However, the PDA may not afford you protections when child-rearing choices interfere with requirements of the job. After thoroughly analyzing your situation, we will enforce your rights pursuant to local, state, and federal laws against discrimination in the workplace.
Employment Law and Discrimination Attorneys Protecting the Right for Nursing Mothers to Pump and Breast-Feed in the Workplace
The question of whether lactating mothers are a protected class under federal law is complicated and likely to be contested by your employer. Title VII’s protections for women who wish to engage in breast-pumping in the workplace is similarly unsettled. Fortunately, Colorado’s laws have attempted to recognize the medical importance of pumping and breast-feeding and have encouraged the removal of societal boundaries placed on doing so in public and the workplace. Under state law, your employer may be required to provide workplace accommodations for nursing mothers, such as break times to allow for the expression of breast milk for up to two years after your child’s birth. Additionally, your employer may be required under state law to provide a separate room or other location in close proximity to your work area other than a toilet stall to express breast milk with privacy. An employee who is nursing and wishes to enforce her rights against workplace discrimination may be required to engage in non-binding mediation before going to court.
Contact Our Colorado Pregnancy Discrimination Attorneys