Laws on Pregnancy Discrimination in Workplace


It is imperative to mention that the role of fair employment policies and prevention of discrimination in the workplace has been increasing. The situation has improved over the last few years, but such incidents are still quite common. The primary problem is that many employers are not aware of the fact that their actions are against the law and would lead to penalties. Moreover, their decisions are based on prejudice and are unreasonable most of the time. It is appropriate to review one of such incidents to get a better understanding of the subject matter and the ways in which the problem may be addressed.

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Discrimination Case

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has determined that one of the health agencies in Texas has violated the law with the decision to fire a female professional because of pregnancy. Zanna Clore was forced to go through a doctor evaluation that would help to analyze her condition. The note received suggested that the only possible limitation that may affect her performance is pulling weight higher than 25 lbs.

However, the employer believed that the information is sufficient enough to fire her, and it is clear that the decision is not justified. It is possible to state that the facility was worried about such aspects as mood swings during pregnancy, but it has not been proven that such emotional reactions would hurt the ability to perform assigned nursing tasks. Financial interests of the employer are incredibly problematic in this case (Byron & Roscigno, 2014). The issue is that the organization may be worried that the funds used for training will be spent inefficiently if the worker decides to focus on childbirth, and it affects the process of decision-making.

Violated Principles

One of the most important principles that have been violated is that the employer did not respect the health care professional as an individual and believed that she would be a burden to the organization. Also, the employer did not give her an opportunity to prove that her productivity levels would not be reduced, and the facility would not experience any complications related to her condition. The fact that her professional development was not acknowledged is particularly problematic, and she was not recognized as a valuable specialist.

Title VII Class

An individual was discriminated based on her sex in this case. It is suggested that this chapter also regulates such aspects as pregnancy. The situation that has occurred is quite problematic because the employer did not respect the rights of women. Moreover, it indicates that such beliefs could also affect other decisions related to employment. Pregnant women should not be worried about the impact of this condition on their careers.

Violated Laws

The employer has broken the Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 that has defined most of the areas of discrimination that are not acceptable in the workplace. The Pregnancy Discrimination Act of 1978 was also disregarded, and its primary purpose was to amend the previous federal statute and to make sure that maternity does not affect the employment and income (Smith & Tischler, 2014).

It regulates the relationships between a worker and an employer, and all the aspects related to financial support are mentioned. The Texas Commission on Human Rights Act (TCHRA) was also not acknowledged. It is quite similar to the Title VII and suggests that unfair treatment of pregnant women is unacceptable and should be punished by the law. It is evident that the decision was based solely on the fact that she is pregnant, and the statement is supported by the timing of the decision.

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Preventive Measures

It is appropriate to introduce a reporting system that would help the employees to provide their comments and deliver the necessary information if there is any suspicion of discrimination. Moreover, the decisions related to employment of pregnant women should be reviewed and verified by a professional commission to ensure that they are reasonable, and laws are not broken. Also, it is necessary to establish a particular atmosphere that would support maternity, and offer help to future mothers if they need it.

Female workers should be provided with all the information that would help them to prove that they have experienced discrimination in the workplace because of pregnancy (Misra, 2016). The situation can also be complicated if the race of the employee is involved, and it is important to make sure that decisions are rational (Thayer & Kuzawa, 2015).

Short Policy

It would be reasonable to introduce a framework that will be focused on the rights of pregnant individuals. Moreover, the organization should not fire a healthcare professional based on this condition even if the performance can be affected. Instead, they should be offered the tasks that would not require physical strength, and may not be affected by the fact that an individual is pregnant. Overall, it will help to improve the overall experience of female professionals in the workplace, and would eliminate such cases in the future.

HR Changes

It is necessary to make alterations to current HR policies because they can be viewed as inefficient. The primary issue is that the role of managers and administrators is not well-defined when it comes to promotion of cooperation and prevention of discrimination. Such specialists should be instructed to educate employees about the importance of fair treatment, and they should understand what course of actions should be taken in such situations (Makela, 2012). Another core aspect that should be highlighted is that supervisors must have an understanding of how to set priorities and make decisions based on evidence. Also, it is paramount to prevent any abuse or derogatory comments from the side of other workers, and they must recognize that such behavior will not be tolerated.


In summary, it is possible to state that the focus on such policies is critical, and the discrimination of pregnant employees is not acceptable in the workplace. It would be reasonable to analyze the tasks and responsibilities of nurses to ensure that no complications related to this condition would occur. The implementation of such preventive measures should improve the overall climate in the organization, and respect towards pregnant individuals should become one of the core principles.

The opinion of the public is also crucial in this case, and it is necessary to educate the population on this subject matter to ensure that individuals understand that pregnancy does not affect the ability to perform nursing tasks most of the time. The situation can be quite stressful for women, and they should not be worried about problems with employment (Hall, 2014). Overall, the understanding of the law is crucial, and the knowledge needs to be applied in the workplace to prevent such incidents.


Byron, R. A., & Roscigno, V. J. (2014). Relational power, legitimation, and pregnancy discrimination. Gender & Society, 20(10), 1-28.

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Hall, K. (2014). Social discrimination, mental health and unintended pregnancy among young women. Contraception, 90(3), 340.

Makela, L. (2012). A Narrative Approach to Pregnancy‐related Discrimination and Leader–follower Relationships. Gender, Work & Organisation, 19(6), 677-699.

Misra, S. (2016). Laws on pregnancy discrimination in workplace: “What should be known to every expecting lady?” International Journal of Scientific Research, 5(3), 13-15.

Smith, K., & Tischler, R. (2014). Accommodations under the Pregnancy Discrimination Act. Employment Relations Today, 41(3), 81-86.

Thayer, Z., & Kuzawa, C. (2015). Ethnic discrimination predicts poor self-rated health and cortisol in pregnancy: Insights from New Zealand. Social Science & Medicine, 128(1), 36-42.

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