Proposed New NJLAD Category

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On September 30, 2013, Bill No. S-2995, which would add a new protected category - pregnancy - to the New Jersey Law Against Discrimination, was introduced to the New Jersey Senate by Senator Loretta Weinberg (Bergen).  Under the proposed amendments, it would be unlawful for an employer to treat female employees affected by pregnancy in a less favorable manner than similarly situated persons who are not affected by pregnancy.  Employers would be required to provide reasonable accommodations, upon request of the affected employee with advice of the employee’s physician. In addition, the employer would be prohibited from penalizing an employee who utilized such an accommodation.  Moreover, in the event that an accommodation was deemed not feasible, the employer would be prohibited from penalizing an employee who, as a result, was required to take time off from work, as certified to by her physician. Although the proposed category is identified as “pregnancy,” these amendments would be applicable to pregnancy and childbirth, as well as medical conditions related to both.  Bill S-2995 has been referred to the Senate Labor Committee.