ACLU Statement on House Vote on the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act

September 17, 2020 10:30 am

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WASHINGTON — The House of Representatives will vote on the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act today, bipartisan legislation that will combat a form of pregnancy discrimination and also protect the health and economic security of pregnant workers.

The Pregnant Workers Fairness Act would make clear that employers must provide reasonable accommodations for pregnant employees — such as schedule changes or a break from heavy lifting — that would enable them to stay in the workforce while maintaining a healthy pregnancy.

Vania Leveille, senior legislative counsel at the ACLU, had the following response:

“No one should have to choose between a healthy pregnancy and their job. Too many pregnant workers — especially those in physically demanding jobs, low wage workers, and women of color — have been fired or forced to take unpaid leave and faced devastating financial consequences as a result. But all they needed was a simple job modification that would have let them continue earning a paycheck to support themselves and their families without compromising their health.

“That’s why we need the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act. Today’s House vote is an important step forward to combat pregnancy discrimination in the workplace and protect the health and economic security of pregnant workers. We call on the Senate to immediately take up and pass this common-sense and bipartisan bill and provide pregnant workers the protection they need and deserve, especially now.”

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