EEOC Sets New Pregnancy Guidelines to Protect Moms-to-be

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Discrimination against a pregnant woman has technically been unlawful for years, but the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission updated a few rules and regs on pregnancy discrimination this week. It’s the first update in 30 years, so I guess we should stand up and shout hallelujah for the recognition! I feel like these rules would just naturally be in place, and are simple kind, common-sense matters, but at least now there are legal buffers in place.

A couple biggies that jump out at me: Breast-feeding is now on the books as a pregnancy-related medical condition, which means employers must provide an environment to accommodate a woman who is lactating, including flexibility and a place to pump (or nurse if your baby happens to be there with you). 

It also implemented equality for dads and moms regarding parental leave. Dads must be offered the same leave as new moms. That’s pretty huge!

In addition, it spelled out when companies have to provide an pregnant employee with light duty and bans forcing an employee to take leave if they can’t do perform usual tasks due to the pregnancy. That came after a case heard by the Supreme Court where a UPS worker was forced to take leave after she became pregnant. 

Check out the EEOC Q&A regarding enforcment of new guidelines. Good info to have in your back pocket if your planning on getting pregnant anytime soon!