Locke Lord QuickStudy: Greater Protections During Pregnancy on the Horizon in Massachusetts

May 9, 2017

Massachusetts may soon enact The Pregnant Workers Fairness Act, which Speaker Robert DeLeo has identified as a priority. It recently won the approval of the Committee on Labor and Workforce Development, which unanimously recommended the legislation. The bill bars employers from denying pregnant women "reasonable" accommodations including "more frequent or longer paid or unpaid breaks, time off to recover from childbirth with or without pay, acquisition or modification of equipment, seating, temporary transfer to a less strenuous or hazardous position, job restructuring, light duty, break time and private non-bathroom space for expressing breast milk, assistance with manual labor, or modified work schedules" provided the accommodation "would not impose undue hardship on the employer." Nearly 120 lawmakers, including a majority of the Senate, have signed onto the bill as co-sponsors. It appears that the business community will not seriously oppose the legislation.