Workplace rights related to pregnancy

On Behalf of | Mar 19, 2020 | Employment Law |

Pregnancy is no doubt an exciting time for any working professional in Syracuse that is expecting. Expectant fathers look forward to those first few days of being able to hold their new babies and support their recovering spouses. Their careers, however, are typically not impacted as drastically as expectant mothers currently in the workforce.

A working woman may be justifiably concerned about how her pregnancy may affect her job status. Thus, those in this position may do well to research the workplace protections afforded to them when they are pregnant.

Protections during pregnancy

Per the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, one can find these benefits detailed in the Pregnancy Discrimination Act (an amendment to the Civil Rights Act). This states that employers are to allow expectant mothers to work as long as they are able during their pregnancy (e.g. not requiring women who have missed time for pregnancy related conditions to remain on leave until they have delivered). Similarly, they must offer leave for a mother experiencing any temporary disabilities due to her pregnancy just as they would any other employee dealing with temporarily disabling conditions. Specifically regarding leave, they must hold the job of an expectant mother until she is able to return from leave. These protections are in addition to those afforded under the Family and Medical Leave Act.

A mother’s rights after returning from delivery

After delivery, a new mother may have other special needs once she has returned to work after delivering her baby. Chief among these may be the need to express breast milk during her work shift. According to the U.S. Department of Labor, the Fair Labor Standards Act requires that her employer allow her time and dedicated space to do this for up to one year after the birth of her baby.