FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Press Contact: Natalie Moran
This afternoon, the House of Representatives passed H.R. 2694, the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act, in a bipartisan vote of 329-73. Rev. Douglas Greenaway, President & CEO of the National WIC Association, offers the following statement in response:
"It is time for federal law to reflect the realities of working women. The Pregnant Workers Fairness Act is a common-sense and long-overdue measure that will ensure no woman will have to choose between the health of her pregnancy and her livelihood. Today’s vote demonstrates broad bipartisan support to take the necessary steps to assure healthy pregnancies.
"For too long, pregnant workers have had little legal recourse if their employer denies workplace modifications – even simple accommodations such as a stool to sit on, relief from heavy lifting, or extra bathroom breaks. As Rep. Kim Schrier noted on the floor today, WIC providers know that workplace supports complement adequate nutrition and access to healthcare to prevent adverse pregnancy or birth outcomes. To grow the next generation of healthy Americans, pregnant workers need this bill’s protections to be signed into law.
"The Pregnant Workers Fairness Act is the result of a thoughtful legislative process and bipartisan negotiations that sought input from public health and business stakeholders alike. The National WIC Association would like to thank the incredible leadership of the House of Representatives in advancing this legislation, especially Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Chairman Bobby Scott for shepherding this legislation to passage on the floor and the bill’s sponsors – Reps. Jerry Nadler, Lucy McBath, John Katko, and Jaime Herrera Beutler – for championing this bill.
"Every day, WIC providers see pregnant women struggle to balance medical advice with the expectations of their employers. No woman should be forced to choose between the two. In light of today’s vote, we urge the Senate to move forward with this critical legislation and deliver on behalf of pregnant workers nationwide."