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Workplace discrimination still affects pregnant workers in Texas

One of the most exciting times for a woman -- being pregnant and awaiting her bundle of joy -- can easily turn into one of the most distressing times if her employer doesn't share in her excitement. The woman's growing belly can quickly become a growing concern in the eyes of a Texas employer, which may overlook her skills and past contributions. A business owner could instead see an employee who may end up taking a lengthy hiatus and not contribute much to the company during that time. In today's world, workplace discrimination against pregnant women continues to be a real concern, according to research.

Most new moms in a recent survey said that their employers did not accommodate their pregnancies before or after they gave birth. Many of them said that they often had to alter their schedules, take more breaks or perform different duties while they were expecting. Others needed their workplaces to be adjusted.

However, many of these women said that they didn't voice their needs for such accommodation because they were afraid of being denied. In about 5 to 9 percent of cases, their requests were rejected in various situations. Estimates suggest that at least 250,000 women each year have their pregnancy-related requests turned down.

The Pregnancy Discrimination Act makes it illegal for employers to engage in workplace discrimination based on childbirth or pregnancy. In addition, the state of Texas has passed laws requiring that employers offer reasonable accommodations for such employees. If an employer fails to abide by these laws, a woman who has been discriminated against certainly has the right to pursue a claim against the employer. A successful claim may include an order requiring the employer to make reasonable accommodations for the worker in addition to other remedies to which the worker may be entitled.

Source: thinkprogress.org, Why Are Workplaces Still Not Ready For Pregnant Workers?, Bryce Covert, Jan. 31, 2014

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