Breaking it Down: New Workplace Laws Provide Protections For Pregnant & Nursing Mothers
Two laws were recently passed to assist pregnant and nursing mothers in the workplace: the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act (PWFA Act) and the Providing Urgent Maternal Protections for Nursing Mother Act (PUMP Act).
Pregnant Workers Fairness Act
Effective June 27, 2023, the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act guarantees that new and expecting moms get reasonable accommodations in the workplace. The PWFA is an extension of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) which protects workers from discrimination based on a person’s disability.
Employers covered by the PWFA act are required to provide “reasonable accommodations” to a worker’s known limitations related to:
Related medical conditions
Exceptions are made if the accommodation would cause the employer an “undue hardship.”
Reasonable accommodations under PWFA include things like:
Doctors’ appointments during typical work hours
Breaks in a private space to express breast milk (not a bathroom)
Changes in dress code
Who is covered by this law?
Private and public sector employers with at least 15 employees
The Bottom Line: Starting June 27, 2023, new and expecting moms are guaranteed reasonable accommodations in the workplace.
Why it matters: This extension of the ADA protects pregnant workers from discrimination and ensures they receive necessary support during pregnancy, childbirth and related medical conditions.
Providing Urgent Maternal Protections for Nursing Mothers Act
Effective as of December 29, 2022, the Providing Urgent Maternal Protections for Nursing Mothers (PUMP) Act ensures that employers must provide lactating and nursing employees with:
A private, non-bathroom space
Breaks with a reasonable amount of time to pump breast milk
These protections are guaranteed for up to one year after a child’s birth.
The Bottom Line: The Providing Urgent Maternal Protections for Nursing Mothers Act guarantees lactating and nursing employees a private space and breaks to pump breast milk.
Why it matters: These protections are important for supporting the health and well-being of nursing mothers in the workplace.
Dig Deeper: https://www.dol.gov/agencies/whd/pump-at-work
About the Mobile Chamber
The Mobile Chamber is a private business organization with more than 1,700 members and the economic developer for the City of Mobile and Mobile County. The Mobile Chamber’s focus is to provide members with networking, marketing and professional development opportunities, expand jobs in the area, develop the local workforce, advocate legislative priorities and offer resources to help small businesses grow. Additional information is on the Chamber’s website, Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter and YouTube.