As a pregnant woman, you could face a number of problems in the workplace. From difficulty adjusting to changes in your schedule to physical hurdles associated with pregnancy, this is often an exciting yet challenging time in one’s life. Unfortunately, some women have an especially tough time due to discrimination at work.
It is pivotal for pregnant women and employers to have a clear understanding of various forms of pregnancy discrimination, recognize how prevalent they are, and promptly address any instances of unlawful discrimination.
Statistics on pregnancy discrimination
The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission publishes statistics on pregnancy discrimination charges in the U.S. According to their data, the agency received more than 2,200 reports of pregnancy discrimination over the course of fiscal year 2021. This is overall trending downward over the past years, from a high of more than 4,000 reports in fiscal year 2010.
Data on pregnancy discrimination settlements
Throughout fiscal year 2021, the EEOC registered over 2,400 resolutions of these pregnancy-related discrimination complaints, including some that may have resulted from receipt of complaint in a past year. These charges resulted in 328 settlements, and these victims of pregnancy discrimination received $14 million. It is important to note that this number excludes benefits received via litigation, meaning that these benefits were obtained via settlement, mediation or conciliation. This dollar amount has remained mostly steady since 2010, despite the lower number of received complaints.
Clearly, pregnancy discrimination remains far too prevalent in workplaces across the country. Every year, many pregnant women find themselves in this position. It is important to understand the different ways that this type of discrimination occurs and take action swiftly if you experience it firsthand. Sadly, some victims of pregnancy discrimination worry about retaliation and choose to stay silent, and they deserve justice.