The Problem

The last thing that a pregnant woman needs is a problem at work because she is pregnant.  Yet, discrimination against pregnant women and nursing mothers continues.  Women face losing jobs or the ability to advance in their career because of their pregnancy.  When nursing mothers return to work, they often are harassed because of the need to express breast milk.


State and federal laws prohibit discrimination based on pregnancy. Pregnancy discrimination can occur when an expectant mother is fired, not hired, or otherwise discriminated against because of her pregnancy or her intention to become pregnant.

Pregnancy discrimination also occurs when a pregnant woman is treated differently or harassed because of her pregnancy, or with issues related to lactation and breastfeeding.

A pregnant woman who seeks and is denied an accommodation because of her pregnancy also may pursue a claim. A woman can pursue a pregnancy accommodation claim by showing she sought an accommodation, that the employer did not accommodate her, and that the employer accommodated others similarly situated.

Nursing mothers are also offered some protection under federal law if they are non-exempt employees.  A nursing mother must be given reasonable breaks and a private place to express breast milk.

Moving Forward

 If you believe you have been discriminated against in your employment because of your pregnancy, contact us by clicking Tell Us About Your Problem and filling out the questionnaire.