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Your working rights when pregnant

As a woman who is pregnant, you may have been nervous or confused during the process of announcing your pregnancy to your employer. Many women become concerned that this announcement might lead to a change in the way that they are treated at work, concerned that they might be perceived as less committed or that they might miss out on future promotion opportunities.

It is important to remember as a pregnant woman that you are legally protected from any type of differential treatment such as this. It is vital that you understand fully your rights as you navigate the different stages of pregnancy and motherhood.

What does the Pregnancy Discrimination Act say about my rights?

The Pregnancy Discrimination Act is a piece of legislation that asserts that it is illegal for any United States employer to treat their worker differently if they become pregnant. It is important to note that the legislation is only valid for businesses that employ 15 or more people.

The legislation means that it is unlawful for any pregnant worker to be fired, demoted or have their hours cut because they are pregnant. In addition, appropriate accommodations must be given to you. This includes your worker being understanding to the fact that you are likely to need to run to doctor's appointments at certain times, and you may be more prone to illness.

If you are experiencing a strain in your relationship with your employer due to your pregnancy, it is important to be aware of your rights. You have the right to a supportive working environment, and your pregnancy should never negatively affect your career prospects.

Source: A better balance, "Working While Pregnant & Parenting: California," accessed April 11, 2018

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