Discrimination of any type is not legal in employment situations. However, every day there are new claims from employees who face such issues. Pregnancy discrimination is one such area that seems to keep coming up despite laws and other efforts to stop it. It has a drastic effect on women, sometimes even putting them in dangerous situations that could harm them or their unborn baby.
According to the Center for American Progress, the problem with pregnancy discrimination goes beyond just issues due to pregnancy. Women of color and women in low-paying jobs are more likely to experience pregnancy discrimination.
Low wage earners
Women in lower-paying jobs are at greater risk of being the target of pregnancy discrimination than women in higher-paying roles. Employers may refuse simple accommodation requests for lower-paid employees, or expect these pregnant employees to continue working without asking for changes in their job duties. The implication here is that lower-paid workers are easier to replace, so if these women don’t like it, then they can quit.
Women of color
There is a lot of racial discrimination at play with pregnancy discrimination. Stereotypes of the strong single black mother, or assumptions that black women need the work and will not speak up, may contribute to the problem. Whatever the reason, pregnancy discrimination is not okay, and women of color deserve the same legal protection on the job as other women.
A different approach
If you believe you are facing pregnancy discrimination on the job, it is important to speak with a skilled attorney who can give you protective guidance. On a legislative level, because there are other types of discrimination embedded in pregnancy discrimination, a different approach may be required to address the problem. Lawmakers should consider how to combat all the angles of pregnancy discrimination to find a real solution.