How does California protect women from pregnancy discrimination? 

Labor laws in California make it unlawful for employers to discriminate based on pregnancy. Women may face pregnancy discrimination if they are being maltreated because they are pregnant or have the potential to be pregnant. 

As a result, it is important to examine some of the most common forms of pregnancy discrimination and how the law protects employees.  

What does pregnancy discrimination look like?

Pregnancy discrimination can take various forms. For example, a company may refuse to employ a woman purely on the basis that she is pregnant. Other common examples of pregnancy discrimination include denying a woman promotion or not allowing time off to seek medical treatment for pregnancy-related symptoms. 

What is workplace retaliation for pregnancy?

Unfortunately, pregnant employees may find themselves mistreated because they have raised legitimate employment concerns. For example, they may have reported discrimination by a supervisor to the human resource department or asked an employer to make reasonable accommodations in the workplace. 

Examples of retaliation can include but are not limited to hostile treatment from supervisors, verbal abuse and being transferred unwillingly to another department. 

Which laws protect pregnant women?

The Fair Employment and Housing Act sets out provisions that ensure pregnant women are protected from discrimination. Furthermore, pregnant women are protected by the Pregnancy Disability Leave Law (PDLL). Under these rules, employers must offer disability leave for up to four months for ailments that result from pregnancy. 

Recognizing the common signs of pregnancy discrimination could be in your best interests. If you have been the victim of workplace discrimination, it is important to understand that you have legal rights and protections. 


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