An expectant mother must battle fatigue, morning sickness, and general physical discomfort as her due date nears. However, pregnant women can face a different battle entirely at their place of work. According to Cherry Hill employment lawyers, Pregnancy discrimination occurs whenever an employer treats an expectant mother adversely, based upon her condition. Recognizing when pregnancy discrimination has occurred can be complicated, particularly when an employer’s actions are disguised as genuine concern.
To that end, Cherry Hill employment lawyers note that a victim of pregnancy discrimination will often be provided a reduced workload or new responsibilities at her job when neither scenario is necessary. An expectant mother who has been ordered by a physician to follow certain restrictions – such as avoiding heavy lifting or remaining on bed rest – will clearly be rendered unable to complete many work-related tasks. However, most pregnancies will not limit the activity or energy level of an expectant mother. When an employee is enjoying an uncomplicated pregnancy, she is just as capable of performing her job as her coworkers.
Pregnancy Discrimination in Hiring
Another form of pregnancy discrimination occurs before an expectant mother has even secured a job with a prospective employer. During the application and interview process an employer should consider the applicant on the merits of her resume, without factoring in an obvious pregnancy. Employers who refuse to extend an offer to an otherwise qualified candidate can be held liable for pregnancy discrimination.
Fortunately, state and federal law provide protection to expectant mothers in both scenarios. The Civil Rights Act of 1964 was amended in 1978 to include The Pregnancy Discrimination Act (PDA). The New Jersey Pregnant Worker’s Fairness Act, signed into law in 2014, goes even further. Under this state statute not only must an employer refrain from discriminating against expectant mothers, employers must also provide pregnant workers with comfort-based accommodations during the work day.
Cherry Hill Employment Lawyers at McOmber McOmber & Luber, P.C. Enforce Anti-Discrimination Statutes in Court
Women who are expecting a baby enjoy broad protection under the aforementioned statutes yet many will fail to avail themselves of these protections when confronted with pregnancy discrimination. Expectant mothers must fight back. With extensive experience litigating employment discrimination complaints throughout New Jersey, the Cherry Hill employment lawyers at McOmber McOmber & Luber, P.C. can help. Complete this online questionnaire or call our Red Bank, New Jersey offices at 732-842-6500 or our Marlton, New Jersey offices at 856-985-9800 to schedule an appointment today.