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What does pregnancy discrimination look like?

Any workplace discrimination may add stress and pressure to you. What happens when you face it as a pregnant woman?

While you may believe spotting the signs of on-the-job pregnancy discrimination would prove easy, think again. Some employers may do a good job of covering their ill-intentions or those of your co-workers. Take a look at some of the signs that you are facing discrimination because of your pregnancy.

What are examples of pregnancy discrimination?

The Pregnancy Discrimination Act or PDA establishes what employers cannot do to a woman because she is pregnant or may become pregnant. For instance, an employer cannot refuse to hire a woman because of pregnancy, either because she already is or may become pregnant. A woman cannot face dismissal during or after she has had a baby when it relates to the pregnancy or rights of a new mother. An employer cannot demote a woman during or after her pregnancy simply because of her condition. This does not mean a pregnant woman cannot get demoted or fired; however, the company must have valid evidence of job performance issues or other terminable offenses.

Can an employer refuse to grant maternity leave?

The Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) allows a woman to take a minimum of six weeks off after having a baby. Your employer should excuse the absences and hold your job. If your position is crucial and needs filling, you should get it back upon your return. The alternative is that they put you into a similar function with the same pay when you come back.

Pregnancy should not mean you feel harassed, threatened or inadequate at work. Should you have a negative experience on the job, you may want to get assistance to navigate the resources at your disposal.