Vermont Maternity and Pregnancy laws & HR compliance analysis

Vermont Maternity and Pregnancy: What you need to know

The Vermont Fair Employment Practices Act prohibits employment discrimination based on sex and sexual orientation, unless a bona fide occupational qualification (BFOQ) exception applies (VT Stat. Tit. 21 Sec. 495).
Pregnancy and related medical conditions are sometimes included in the definition of sex.
The Act applies to all employers (VT Stat. Tit. 21 Ch. 5 Sec. 494et seq.).
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Effective January 1, 2018, Vermont amended the state Fair Employment Practices Act to prohibit covered employers from failing to provide a reasonable accommodation for an employee’s pregnancy-related condition unless the accommodation would impose undue hardship on the employer (VT Stat. Tit. 21 Sec 495(k).
Covered employers. The law applies to all employers.
Covered conditions. “Pregnancy-related condition” includes any limitation of an employee’s ability to perform the functions of a job caused by pregnancy, childbirth, or a medical condition related to pregnancy or childbirth.
Reasonable accommodations. The law does not list specific examples of accommodations. Rather, it provides that covered employees be given the same rights and be subject to the same standards with respect to the provision of accommodation as a qualified individual with a disability as defined by the state’s ADA-equivalent.
Nonetheless, some examples of accommodations may include, but are not limited to:
• More frequent or longer break periods;
• More frequent bathroom breaks;
• A private place, other than a bathroom stall, for expressing milk;
• Modified food or drink policies;
• Seating or allowing the employee to sit more frequently if the job normally requires standing;
• Assistance with manual labor ...

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