If you’re a pregnant employee, something that you should know is that you are protected against discrimination by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). As someone who is pregnant, your employer is responsible for reasonably accommodating your needs on the job.
For example, if you are seven months pregnant and need to sit more often, your employer should provide more regular breaks or seating for you, if possible. Reasonable accommodations have to be safe, so if it would not be safe for you to have a chair in a certain job role, then you may be moved to a different role where you can have the accommodation that you need or be given much more regular breaks to minimize any issues you’re having.
What are some reasonable accommodations for pregnant women?
Some of the reasonable accommodations that are specifically possible for pregnant women may include:
- Allowing you to sit down during your shift
- Limiting heavy lifting during a shift
- Temporarily reassigning some tasks
- Temporarily changing the person’s position to something safer or more comfortable
- Allowing the worker to telecommute when possible
What should you do if your employer isn’t willing to provide you with accommodations?
Your employer is required by law to provide you with reasonable accommodations. If they cannot or will not provide you with accommodations to help you get through your shift, you may want to look into taking an unpaid leave of absence or starting on maternity leave, both of which may protect your position in the workplace. If you’re concerned about your employer’s actions, your attorney can give you more information on what to do next.