CHAIR FOR PREGNANT WOMEN IS PLACED OUTSIDE THE HOUSE CHAMBER

By Bob Katzen

The law signed by Gov. Baker at the end of July 2017 that prohibits an employer from discriminating against, refusing to employ or firing a woman because she is pregnant or has a condition related to pregnancy took effect on April 1.

The measure guarantees reasonable accommodations and safety measures for pregnant mothers. Reasonable accommodations include time off to recover from childbirth; more frequent, longer paid or unpaid breaks; acquiring or modifying equipment or seating arrangements; and a private non-bathroom space for expressing breast milk — unless any of these would create an undue hardship on the employer.

During last week’s budget debate, a chair with a “Reserved for Pregnant Individuals” sign was placed outside the House chamber.

Supporters said a pregnant woman should not have to fear losing her job when she could continue working with some reasonable adjustments. They argued that no one should have to choose between a healthy pregnancy and a weekly paycheck.

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