Discrimination on the basis of pregnancy, childbirth, or related medical conditions constitutes unlawful sex discrimination under Title VII. The EEOC recently issued new Enforcement Guidance to ensure employers treat women who are impacted by pregnancy or childbirth in the same way as other applicants or employees. The EEOC noted that most of its guidance is unchanged, but portions concerning disparate treatment of pregnant employees and light duty were revised as a result of the March 2015 Supreme Court decision in Young v. United Parcel Serv. Inc.

One focus of the Supreme Court in the UPS case was on equal access to light duty jobs for pregnant employees. The court noted that failure to provide light duty positions to women impacted by pregnancy while providing light duty work to a large number of individuals with other needs “gives rise to an inference of intentional discrimination.”

As a result of the UPS case and recent EEOC guidance revisions, employers should become familiar with what the EEOC considers to be best practice in dealing with pregnancy, including the following:

A complete list of EEOC's best practices can be found on the EEOC's website.

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