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Pregnant person sits at a desk with one hand resting on their stomach and the other on a keyboard.
At Liberty Podcast

The Decade-Long Fight for Pregnant Workers

July 20, 2023

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On Tuesday, June 27, more than a decade after its first introduction in a congressional committee, the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act went into effect, changing the landscape of work for all pregnant people. Before this law, many pregnant workers had to decide between protecting their jobs and protecting their health.

While there have been efforts in the past to protect pregnant workers, employers have always found loopholes to avoid providing accommodations. Against their judgment and against their doctors’ judgment, pregnant workers have had to lift heavy objects, stand for hours on end, and expose themselves to hazardous chemicals. This will no longer be the case thanks to national advocacy efforts, including those from us here at the ACLU.

Today, we’re speaking with Vania Leveille, senior legislative counsel in the ACLU’s National Political Advocacy Department, who will share more about the mammoth undertaking that moved the law to its passage, and Gillian Thomas, senior staff attorney for the ACLU’s Women’s Rights Project, who will detail what the act looks like in practice.

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