Generally, we think of pregnancy discrimination as occurring when women face harassment or ridicule because of a pregnancy or pregnancy-related conditions. But given the broad scope of federal, state and local laws prohibiting pregnancy discrimination, it is important to consider what exactly pregnancy discrimination means and the many forms it can take. For example, what happens if your employer and co-workers are suddenly too nice to you, once you share with them that you are pregnant? What happens when you lose late shifts and overtime due to pregnancy?
Those are also forms of pregnancy discrimination. The law forbids employers from treating employees differently due to pregnancy, no matter what different means. If your employer treats you differently as a result of your pregnancy — regardless of whether differently turns out to mean being forced out of your job altogether or just being moved to easier day shifts or anything in between — then your employer violates important provisions of city, state and federal anti-discrimination laws.
New York City’s Human Rights Law provides penalties for discrimination against pregnant women. Additionally, the federal Pregnancy Discrimination Act penalizes discrimination against pregnant women in any aspect of employment. New York State’s Human Rights Law prohibits employers from forcing pregnant employees to take leaves of absence, as well as prohibiting discrimination against pregnant women more generally under the umbrella of marital status.
Posted in Discrimination | Tagged discrimination lawsuit, human rights law, pregnancy discrimination, pregnancy discrimination act