On April 15, 2015, Nebraska government signed an amendment (L.B 627) to the Nebraska Fair Employment Practice Act (FEPA), requiring employers to provide pregnant employees with reasonable accommodations. All employers with 15 ore more employees, state and local governments, and labor organizations must comply with FEPA. This act is set to:

  • Clarify and solidify workplace protections for pregnant employees
  • Define reasonable accommodations for pregnant employees
  • Provide workplace protections for pregnant employees similar to those already provided to workers with disabilities

This new act will take effect in September 2015, although the exact date is unclear. Bill LB 627 states that is unlawful employment practice to:

“Discriminate against an individual who is pregnant, who has given birth, or who has a related medical condition in regard to job application procedures, the hiring, advancement, or discharge of employees, employee compensation, job training, and other terms, conditions, and privileges of employment.”

All employers are required to accommodate pregnant employees, unless they can demonstrate that doing so would impose an undue hardship. As listed in the act, reasonable accommodations include:

  • The acquisition of equipment for sitting
  • More frequent or longer breaks
  • Periodic rest
  • Assistance with manual labor
  • Job restructuring
  • Light-duty assignment
  • Modified work schedules
  • Temporary transfers to less strenuous or hazardous work
  • Time off to recover from childbirth
  • Break time and appropriate facilities for breast feeding or expressing breast milk

Employees don’t need to provide medical notification to request an accommodation, they need only show they have known physical limitations. This scope goes beyond what is provided for disabled employees, by allowing employers to provide assistance with manual labor, light-duty assignments, and temporary transfers to less strenuous or hazardous work.

For more information on the bill click here.