September 23, 2023

Final December, President Joe Biden signed the Pregnant Staff Equity Act into legislation—and it goes into impact at present, June 27. 

What it’s:

Beginning at present, the Pregnant Staff Equity Act is a nationwide proper. It requires employers to make “affordable lodging” for pregnant and postpartum employees and job candidates.

In response to the White Home’s official reality sheet, lodging could embody providing gentle obligation on bodily jobs, extra frequent lavatory or water breaks, or a stool to take a seat on—“with out discriminating or retaliating in opposition to” the employee.

Basically, pregnant and postpartum employees are actually legally entitled to those lodging with out having to undergo the method of combating for cover at work via the Being pregnant Discrimination Act or the Individuals With Disabilities Act. They’ll additionally now legally request these lodging with out worry of retaliation or backlash. Along with with the ability to make these requests, pregnant and postpartum employees are actually additionally entitled to extra flexibility of their schedules for physician’s appointments. 

This comes on the heels of the PUMP for Nursing Moms Act, which went into impact again in April. That act legally requires employers to offer house and time for lactation breaks for workers. Further lactation wants are protected via the Pregnant Staff Equity Act as nicely.

What it means for you:

For those who’re pregnant or postpartum, you now have the authorized proper to request affordable lodging to make sure that you’re secure at work and aren’t overextending your self. It’s possible you’ll request distant work choices if relevant at your job, or ask to be given gentle obligation if you happen to’re performing a bodily demanding job. 

You’ll additionally be capable of take extra frequent breaks to make use of the lavatory, eat, and relaxation, and you may request a fundamental necessity like a stool so you may sit down whilst you work. You’ll have the appropriate to request day off for prenatal appointments, and also you’ll be shielded from discrimination or retaliation from making these requests.

In essence, you’ll be capable of extra comfortably and safely carry out your job whereas pregnant or postpartum with out having to fret about whether or not you’ll be let go for making affordable requests.

In Context:

Final December, President Joe Biden signed the Pregnant Staff Equity Act into legislation “as a part of the bipartisan end-of-year omnibus legislation.” The concept was to offer protections for the tens of millions of pregnant employees—and postpartum employees—all through the nation. 

The Pregnant Staff Equity Act was initially launched over 10 years in the past as a Democratic invoice. So, it’s taken a whole decade for the laws to be signed into legislation. The Senate voted so as to add these protections 73-24.