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Adams and Reese Labor and Employment Practice Team Leader Scott Hetrick led a webinar on May 1 for Celesq® AttorneysEd Center on “Workplace Accommodations for Nursing Mothers and Pregnant Employees: Federal and State Requirements.”

The webinar guided attorneys on two landmark federal civil rights acts for nursing mothers and pregnant employees in the workplace: Pregnant Workers Fairness Act (PWFA) and Providing Urgent Maternal Protections for Nursing Mothers Act (PUMP Act). Hetrick highlighted the top issues relating to these federal mandates, provided an update on the interplay of these statutes with selected comparable state laws, and offered advice for PWFA and PUMP Act compliance in the modern workplace. 

Key issues that Hetrick discussed included:

  • What steps should employer’s counsel take to ensure business compliance with the PWFA and PUMP Act? 
  • What issues have not been resolved or remain ambiguous as counsel offers advice to clients for purposes of the PWFA and PUMP Act? 
  • What is the best practices advice for employers when navigating these laws to steer clear of costly pregnancy-related lawsuits?

On April 15, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) published the “Implementation of the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act” – final rule and interpretive guidance. The final rule will take effect two months after its April 19 publication in the Federal Register.

The PWFA requires most employers with 15 or more employees to provide “reasonable accommodations,” or changes at work, for a worker’s known limitations related to pregnancy, childbirth, or related medical conditions, unless the accommodation will cause the employer an undue hardship. The PWFA builds upon existing protections against pregnancy discrimination under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and access to reasonable accommodations under the Americans with Disabilities Act.

At Adams and Reese, Hetrick leads the national law firm’s labor and employment team. A Partner in the Mobile office, Hetrick is a management rights advocate who represents employers on federal and state labor and employment law compliance and dispute resolution. He speaks frequently on employment law and human resource management issues at seminars for personnel managers and business owners and has published numerous articles on employment law. Hetrick has been recognized in Best Lawyers® in Employment Law since 2010.

Celesq® AttorneysEd Center provides CLE programs to attorneys, focusing on the hottest topics and leading trends in their practice areas that are of interest to their business clients and corporate counsel attorneys.