Casey working to protect pregnant women
HARRISBURG — Ahead of Mother’s Day, one U.S. Senator is working to protect pregnant women in the workplace. U.S. Senator Bob Casey is pushing for the passage of the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act.
Casey was on the WKOK Newsline Thursday. He said “Years ago we had all kinds of progress made on discrimination cases. Then later in the late 1970′s we had action to protect pregnant women. In 1990 we had the American’s With Disabilities Act, which provided protection for workers with disabilities. But unfortunately, in the midst of all that work, there was a gap in the law so that workers who happen to be pregnant don’t have the same protections.”
Casey says there are 96,729 women who are in the workforce and give birth each year — and they deserve rights. “Too many women who are in the workplace during pregnancy still face problems because the employer might refuse to provide those reasonable accommodations,” He said. “Whether it’s light duty to accommodate a lifting restriction, or access to water or other accommodations that they should have a right to expect. I’m sure plenty of employers provide these things, but the ones that don’t so far aren’t’ required too. That’s the problem we are trying to fix with the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act.”
The Pregnant Workers Fairness Act would require reasonable accommodations for pregnant workers and protect them from retribution in the workplace. Casey says the bill has 26 co-sponsors. The bill also bars employers from denying employment opportunities to women based on their need for reasonable accommodations related to pregnancy, childbirth, or related medical conditions. You can learn more about the bill at www.casey.senate.gov (Codi Jade)