Pittsburgh, PA: Expanded Protections for Pregnant Workers – AND Their Partners


All Employers with 5 or More Pittsburgh, PA Employees


March 15, 2019


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(888) 378-2456

Over the last few years, more and more cities and states have increased anti-discrimination protections for pregnant workers, but the city of Pittsburgh has become one of the first in the nation to extend similar protections to the partners of pregnant employees.  This amendment to existing city code comes by way of a new ordinance unanimously passed by the Pittsburgh city council.

Pittsburgh’s Fair Practices Provisions already prohibits employers of five or more employees from discriminating on the basis of sex, including pregnancy, childbirth or a related medical condition.  Under the new ordinance:

  • “Pregnancy” in itself becomes its own protected class;
  • Employers are required to initiate the interactive process with workers who are disabled by pregnancy to determine if a reasonable accommodation (e.g., modifying work schedule or station, revising job duties or requirements, or granting leave requests) can be made; and
  • The anti-discrimination provisions protecting pregnant workers is extended to the individual’s partner, broadly defined as a person of any gender with whom the pregnant worker has a relationship of mutual emotional and/or physical support.

Notably, the definition of “partner” does not require the individuals to have a marital or registered domestic relationship. The City also released a guidance document designed to help employers better understand their rights and responsibilities.

Action Items

  1. Review the ordinance here.
  2. Have employee handbook and policies updated with the new requirements.
  3. Have supervising staff trained on expanded protections for pregnant workers and partners of pregnant workers, including the interactive process for accommodations.
  4. Subscribers can call our HR On-Call Hotline at (888) 378-2456 for further assistance.

Disclaimer: This document is designed to provide general information and guidance concerning employment-related issues. It is presented with the understanding that ManagEase is not engaged in rendering any legal opinions. If a legal opinion is needed, please contact the services of your own legal adviser.

© 2019 ManagEase

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