A bill aimed at protecting pregnant women at work has been introduced in the Pennsylvania State House of Representatives.
State Rep. Matt Smith, D-Allegheny, introduced House Bill 2541, a measure that would amend the Pennsylvania Human Relations Act (PHRA) by adding language specifically protecting pregnant women in the workplace.
"It is vitally important that every worker have a fair shot at employment and fair treatment in the workplace," Smith said. "My legislation will clarify and specify that sex discrimination against women who are pregnant will not be tolerated."
Although the PHRA prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex, it does not specifically forbid discrimination against women who are pregnant.
As a result, Smith said many state governments have enacted laws to specifically prohibit discrimination of women on the basis of pregnancy. Such measures ensure that all women are treated fairly and that they receive full protection under the PHRA.
The bill would define pregnancy in the law, and add pregnancy to the list of discriminatory practices deemed unlawful by the PHRA.Specifically, the legislation would incorporate the federal Pregnancy Discrimination Act definition of pregnancy into the PHRA as a specific protected class.