Bonamici-Backed Bill to Protect Pregnant Workers from Discrimination Advances to House Floor
WASHINGTON, DC [1/14/20] – Today the Education and Labor Committee approved bipartisan legislation sponsored by Congresswoman Suzanne Bonamici (D-OR), the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act (HR 2694). This bill establishes the right of pregnant workers to reasonable accommodations on the job without facing discrimination or retaliation in the workplace.
Video of Bonamici’s remarks in support of the legislation can be found here.
“As a mom and a policymaker, I know how important it is for pregnant workers to be able to work and stay healthy during pregnancy,” Congresswoman Suzanne Bonamici said after the markup. “Most women will be pregnant and employed at some point in their lives. But more than four decades after the passage of the Pregnancy Discrimination Act, pregnant women still face discrimination at work. Too often pregnant workers face discrimination or may even lose their jobs when employers fail to provide reasonable accommodations like access to water, seating, and additional break times to use the restroom. This bipartisan legislation will protect the right of pregnant workers to reasonable accommodation at work. It is an important step to protect the health, well-being, and economic security of all pregnant women and their families."
According to the National Partnership for Women and Families, more than 60 percent of women have experienced pregnancy discrimination on the job, including losing a job, being denied a promotion, or not being hired in the first place. Women are increasingly either the primary or co- breadwinners of households, and as a result more pregnant workers work later into their pregnancies—and discrimination against pregnant workers negatively affects their entire family.
Bonamici chairs the Subcommittee on Civil Rights and Human Services, which held a hearing on the bill in 2019. Bonamici recently spoke to CBS This Morning for an in-depth look at the importance of the bill. A long list of organizations support the bill, including A Better Balance, the National Partnership for Women & Families, National Women’s Law Center, ACLU, U.S. Chamber of Commerce, and the Teamsters Union. More details about the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act can be found here.