New EEOC Guidelines on Pregnancy Discrimination


New EEOC Guidelines on Pregnancy Discrimination on

EEOC expands guidelines on job discrimination against pregnant workers.

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has updated its pregnancy discrimination guidelines for the first time in 30 years, and they have made it clear that the harassment or discrimination against pregnant women by employers in the workplace is sex discrimination, and thus is illegal.

The new guidelines address not only the requirements of the Pregnancy Discrimination Act (PDA), but also how the American with Disabilities Act (ADA) applies in the case of pregnant workers. These new guidelines may make it easier for the EEOC to investigate cases of pregnancy discrimination and give lawyers ammunition to defend victims of harassment or discrimination because of a pregnancy.

Under the New Guidelines:

  • Employers cannot force able pregnant workers to take leave
  • Employers may have to provide light duty for pregnant workers
  • Lactation is covered as a pregnancy-related condition
  • Discrimination based on past or prospective pregnancies is illegal
  • Men and women that are similarly situated must be treated equally

You can view the full Enforcement Guidance on Pregnancy Discrimination and Related Issues, Q&A document, and Fact Sheet on the EEOC website.