Promoting the Well-Being of Pregnant Employees in Iowa Workplaces 

Iowa families should not have to choose between earning a livelihood and healthy pregnancies. And Iowa employers deserve a clear, common-sense rule that is easy to follow.

 

That's why the Iowa Pregnancy Rights Coalition is working to pass The Iowa Pregnant Workers Fairness Act in the 2018 Iowa Legislature. (We supported the bill that was introduced during the 2017 legislative session.) It would provide modest legal protections that would require reasonable accommodations for pregnant employees—things as basic as being able to carry a water bottle or have a chair to sit on periodically.

 

Responsible Iowa businesses are already doing these things. Now let's make sure all businesses do them.

 

It's good for business, and it's good for families. 

The Impact
  • Women make up about 50 percent of Iowa's workforce.

  • Two-thirds of women who had their first child between 2006 and 2008 worked during their pregnancy.

  • 71 percent of women return to the workforce after pregnancy.

  • 38 percent of Iowa working mothers in 2015 were the primary breadwinners for their families; 68 percent were either primary or co-breadwinners. 

 

 

What Other States DO
  • 18 states including Illinois, Minnesota, North Dakota, and Nebraska, have laws in place that require some reasonable accommodation. Four major cities also have such laws.

  • These laws allow pregnant women to continue to be employed without compromising their health or the health of their pregnancies. 

 

What is a "Reasonable Accommodation?"

A reasonable accommodation is a modification or allowance—often modest or slight—that allows an employee to continue working. They include:

  • Carrying a water bottle

  • A stool for workers who stand for long periods

  • Temporarily reassign a pregnant worker to light duty

  • Extra bathroom breaks

  • Accommodate necessary doctor appointments