Search form

Two District of Columbia Agencies Will Enforce New Protections for Pregnant Workers

By Teresa Burke Wright
  • June 3, 2015

The District of Columbia Office of Human Rights (OHR) and the District of Columbia Department of Employment Services (DOES) announced on June 1, 2015, a joint effort to investigate and enforce the Protecting Pregnant Workers Fairness Act of 2014 (“PPWFA” or “Act”). An individual may now file a PPWFA complaint with either OHR or DOES.

The PPWFA, which became effective on March 3, 2015, requires employers to provide reasonable accommodations to employees affected by pregnancy, childbirth, breastfeeding, and related medical conditions. The law also prohibits employers from requiring an employee to take leave if it is possible for the employee to continue working with reasonable accommodation. (For more information, see our article, District of Columbia Increases Protections for Pregnant Workers.) 

OHR is responsible for mediating, investigating, and making preliminary recommendations about whether an employer violated the Act. DOES is responsible for reviewing those recommendations, making final determinations of violations of the Act, and imposing and enforcing penalties. 

To comply with the Act, employers should: 

(1)  Post the newly issued notice of employee rights immediately; 

(2)  Provide a written notice of the right to a reasonable accommodation under the Act:

i.  To new employees at the start of their employment;

ii.  To existing employees by July 1, 2015; and

iii. To an employee who gives notice of pregnancy or related condition within 10 days of receiving the notice. 

A PPWFA fact sheet and workplace posters (in English and Spanish) have been issued. These are available on OHR’s website:http://ohr.dc.gov/page/pregnantworkers

Jackson Lewis attorneys are available to assist employers with questions about the new law’s requirements and provide compliance assistance.

©2015 Jackson Lewis P.C. This material is provided for informational purposes only. It is not intended to constitute legal advice nor does it create a client-lawyer relationship between Jackson Lewis and any recipient. Recipients should consult with counsel before taking any actions based on the information contained within this material. This material may be considered attorney advertising in some jurisdictions. Prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome.

Reproduction of this material in whole or in part is prohibited without the express prior written consent of Jackson Lewis P.C., a law firm that built its reputation on providing workplace law representation to management. Founded in 1958, the firm has grown to more than 900 attorneys in major cities nationwide serving clients across a wide range of practices and industries including government relations, healthcare and sports law. More information about Jackson Lewis can be found at www.jacksonlewis.com.

See AllRelated Articles You May Like

August 23, 2019

New York Revises Employment Protections for Domestic Violence Victims, Adds Accommodation Obligations

August 23, 2019

New York has amended its Human Rights Law to expand protection from employment discrimination for victims of domestic violence. Signed by Governor Andrew Cuomo on August 20, 2019, the new law amends the New York State Human Rights Law with respect to victims of domestic violence. It also requires employers to provide reasonable... Read More

August 21, 2019

Oregon Governor Signs Paid Family and Medical Leave Law

August 21, 2019

Oregon’s paid family and medical leave law was signed by Governor Kate Brown on August 9, 2019. Eligible workers will be permitted to take up to 12 weeks of paid leave under the new law beginning January 1, 2023. The bill (HB 2005) was passed by the state legislature at the end of June. When the law goes into effect, Oregon will... Read More

August 2, 2019

Puerto Rico Enacts Leave for Victims of Domestic Violence, Sexual Harassment and Assault

August 2, 2019

Employees in Puerto Rico may take up to 15 days of unpaid leave each calendar year to address situations related to domestic or gender-based violence, child abuse, sexual harassment in employment, sexual assault, lewd acts, or felony stalking under a new law. The new “Special Leave” is in addition to any other leave to which the employee... Read More