HR Alert

Connecticut Enacts Protections for Pregnant Women in the Workplace

New Law Effective October 1, 2017

A new law in Connecticut sets forth certain workplace protections for pregnant workers. Highlights of the law are presented below.

Discrimination Prohibited
The law prohibits employers with 3 or more employees from taking the following actions:

  • Limiting, segregating, or classifying an employee in a way that would deprive her of employment opportunities due to her pregnancy;
  • Discriminating against an employee or person seeking employment on the basis of her pregnancy in the terms or conditions of her employment;
  • Failing or refusing to make a '''reasonable accommodation''' for an employee or person seeking employment due to her pregnancy--unless the employer can demonstrate that such accommodation would impose an '''reasonable accommodation''' on such employer;
  • Denying employment opportunities to an employee or person seeking employment if such denial is due to the employee's request for a reasonable accommodation due to her pregnancy;
  • Forcing an employee or person seeking employment affected by pregnancy to accept a reasonable accommodation if such employee or person seeking employment: does not have a known limitation related to her pregnancy; or does not require a reasonable accommodation to perform the essential duties related to her employment;
  • Requiring an employee to take a leave of absence if a reasonable accommodation can be provided in lieu of such leave; and
  • Retaliating against an employee in the terms, conditions or privileges of her employment based upon such employee's request for a reasonable accommodation.

Notice
A covered employer must provide written notice of the right to be free from discrimination in relation to pregnancy, childbirth, and related conditions, including the right to a reasonable accommodation to the known limitations related to pregnancy under the law to: new employees at the commencement of employment; existing employees within 120 days after the law takes effect; and any employee who notifies the employer of her pregnancy within 10 days of such notification.

An employer may comply with the provisions of the law by displaying a poster in a conspicuous place, accessible to employees, at the employer's place of business that contains the information required by the law in both English and Spanish. The state may adopt regulations to establish additional requirements concerning the means by which employers must provide such notice.

The law, effective on October 1, 2017, also defines the terms pregnancy, reasonable accommodation, and undue hardship. Click here to read the text of the law.


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