The U.S. EEOC gives new guidance on pregnancy discrimination and pregnancy-related disabilities
- Develop, disseminate and enforce a strong policy based on PDA (Pregnancy Discrimination Act) and ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act). The policy should address the types of conduct that could constitute unlawful discrimination based on pregnancy, childbirth, and related medical conditions.
- Train managers and employees about their rights and responsibilities related to pregnancy, childbirth, and related medical conditions.
- Focus on the individuals’ qualifications when interviewing or during performance reviews. Do not ask questions about pregnancy status, children, and plans to start a family or other related issues.
- Develop specific, job-related qualifications standards for each position that reflect the position’s duties, functions, and competencies and minimize the potential for gender-stereotyping and for discrimination based on pregnancy, childbirth, or related medical conditions.
- Focus on work experience and accomplishments when reviewing and comparing applicants for positions.
- Be sure your leave policies note that an employee may qualify for leave as a reasonable accommodation.
- Monitor compensation practices and performance appraisal systems for patterns of potential discrimination based on pregnancy, childbirth, or related medical conditions.
- Review any light duty policies to ensure they are structured to provide pregnant employee’s access to light duty equal to what you provide to others.
- Have a process in place for expeditiously considering the reasonable accommodation requests of employees with pregnancy-related disabilities.
- State explicitly in any written reasonable accommodation policy that reasonable accommodations may be available to individuals with temporary impairments, including pregnancy-related impairments.
If you are interested in a detailed discussion on how you can avoid pregnancy-related violations, please contact HR Advisors today.