|The U.S. House of Representatives passed the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act (PWFA) in a 329-73 vote on Sept. 17. Ahead of last week’s vote, SHRM sent a letter to the House expressing support for the bill (H.R. 2694).|
The bill is now pending in the Senate before it can be sent to the president to be signed into law. With limited legislative calendar days remaining and other priority items to tackle, Senate consideration of the PWFA is unclear at this time.
Under the bill, private-sector employers with 15 or more workers and all public-sector employers would be required to provide reasonable accommodations to employees and job applicants for pregnancy, childbirth and related medical conditions, unless the accommodation would impose an undue hardship on the employer.
“As one of the first business groups to support H.R. 2694, SHRM applauds House passage of this bill to help foster safe, productive and positive work cultures,” said Emily M. Dickens, SHRM corporate secretary, chief of staff and head of government affairs. “This bipartisan legislation provides integral protections for pregnant workers while also ensuring employers have the flexibility and clarity to best ensure pregnant employees can remain, and thrive, in the workplace.”