February 17, 2021

Pregnant Worker Bill Without Mandated Accommodations Advances

Original story from   IPBS-RJC

Article origination IPBS-RJC
Indiana has one of the highest maternal mortality rates in the country.  - Flickr

Indiana has one of the highest maternal mortality rates in the country.


Updated Feb. 18 at 10:25 a.m.

Legislation to allow pregnant women to ask employers for accommodations at work was passed in the House on Wednesday, but critics say it’s too weak and doesn’t actually change anything.

There are several bills in the General Assembly addressing pregnant worker accommodations. Multiple advocacy groups held rallies for bills requiring accommodations, but this was the only one to be heard in a committee. The bill’s author says it’s not everything she wants either, but calls it a foundation.

READ MORE: How Do I Follow Indiana's Legislative Session? Here's Your Guide To Demystify The Process

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Rep. Maureen Bauer (D-South Bend) offered an amendment to the bill earlier in the week that would mandate accommodations, putting it more in line with what advocates want and other measures Gov. Eric Holcomb supports. However, it did not pass.

“The fact is, without a bill that requires all employees and all employers to make these modifications, we know the stories of infant loss and maternal morbidity will continue,” she said.

The bill now heads to the Senate where concerned lawmakers say they hope mandated accommodations will be added.

Contact reporter Justin at jhicks@wvpe.org or follow him on Twitter at @Hicks_JustinM.

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