Community Issues

Councilwoman Fights for Protection for Other Pregnant Women

A pregnant council woman proposes bill that would protect other pregnant women and their partners from job discrimination before, during and after baby.

Pittsburgh councilwoman Erika Strassburger knows what it's like to worry about being discriminated against when you're pregnant. She's due to have a baby herself in late March. "Early on during my pregnancy, I had pretty severe morning sickness," said Strassburger of Squirrel Hill at a Tuesday news conference (watch it here). "I didn't fear for my job, but I can really empathize with people going through the same thing," she said, quoted in the Tribune Review.

It's why Strassburger has introduced a bill that would expand existing protections against pregnancy discrimination to include women and their partners before and during pregnancy and after childbirth. If it passes, Strassburger says it would be among the first in the country to provide protection for partners of pregnant women.

"This year we've seen more pregnancy discrimination cases than in prior years." Megan Stanley, Pittsburgh Human Relations Commission

The Post-Gazette says the proposal would bar employers from discriminatory practices related to hiring, training, promotions and firing, among other actions, based on whether a woman is pregnant, and extend new rights to the woman's partner.

The bill would also require employers to provide reasonable accommodations to a pregnant woman in terms of her tasks and her work space, and be flexible about giving employees and their partners time off for procedures and tests. It expands a 2014 bill that already bans discrimination against pregnant women.

If you have something to say or a story to tell, Councilwoman Strassburger wants to hear from you. Click here to contact her.

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