Pregnant Woman - Work for Pregnant Woman
Choosing To Continue Working
Most working women who become pregnant choose to continue working throughout their pregnancies, many up to the point of actually having the baby. For a lot of women, it isn't an option. They may be the primary breadwinner in their family or the situation may be that of a single mother pregnancy where the woman has to work to support herself and her yet-to-be-born baby.
Working expectant moms have several things to consider when it comes to working during pregnancy. By planning ahead, both mother and her employer will be able to transition through the pregnancy with the least amount of stress and disruption. Work for a pregnant woman may change during the course of her pregnancy, especially if her work is physical. New parameters may have to be set to accommodate the changing body of a pregnancy woman.
Considerations to be Made
There are some considerations that will naturally be given once the employer is apprised of the situation. On that note, it is best for the employer to hear the news directly from the woman herself rather than through the grapevine. Many women choose not to divulge information prior to the end of the first trimester due to the increased risk of miscarriage in the very early weeks. By advising the employer as soon as possible, the early pregnancy discomforts of frequently having to run to the bathroom and feeling tired all of the time are usually understood and allowance is made for them.
It is always a good idea to be prepared ahead of time for as many eventualities as possible. This adage holds true in the arena of employment as well. Before talking to the boss about being pregnant, it is an advantage to have a plan made ahead of time for work load distribution and the possibilities of other people taking the reins when the time comes to have the baby. If there are special projects on the go, involving people who can step into the gap the mother will leave when she goes on maternity leave is professionalism and consideration for the company.
Exiting and Reentry to the Work Force
Other thoughts should tend toward leaving and reentry times in the job. While the thought may be to work through to the end of the pregnancy, extenuating circumstances may make that impossible. You will have a pretty good idea when you will be leaving, but coming back may be a whole different story. Flexibility is important when it comes to nailing down dates. An expectant working mother should know the company's maternity leave policies before leave is actually taken. Some important questions to ask include: Does the company pay for time off during maternity - if so, what is the rate of pay? How much paid leave time is available? Are there disability benefits should they be needed? When transitioning back into the workforce, does the company help by offering flexible time or allowing for telecommuting? Will the company allow for and pay for any retraining or "back to basics" training needed upon reentry? You will also want to know about insurance coverage and whether the insurance coverage needs to be changed once the baby arrives.
Know Your Rights - Maternity Leave
Some mothers have ended up in court over pregnancy disputes. There have been cases of discrimination against pregnant women in employment situations. If a mother's weight during pregnancy climbs very high, the company may request she take an early leave. Other women have been fired from their jobs when they became pregnant. It is imperative that you know your rights. In the US, under the Family and Medical Leave Act, employees can take time off without pay for pregnancy and family related health issues. The act provides up to 12 weeks of unpaid, job-protected leave per year. It also requires that group health benefits be maintained during the leave. However, a woman must qualify for these benefits. Also, the Pregnancy Discrimination Act says that it is unlawful to discriminate on the basis of pregnancy, childbirth or related health conditions. Pregnant women who have pregnancy-related health conditions must be treated in the same way as other employees with similar disabilities or limitations. It is illegal for a company to fire a pregnant woman just because she is pregnant. They must treat her fairly rather than wishing the pregnant woman away.
Affect of Drugs on Working Women
Sometimes a woman who needs to keep working will use pharmaceuticals to relieve any symptoms she may be having in order to remain on the job. While it is admirable to want to keep working, the fact of the matter is that there are many pharmaceuticals that are not good for an expectant mother or her baby and the risk can be high. Even such over-the-counter medicines as acetaminophen or aspirin for pregnant women can be very dangerous. If drugs are necessary or if a woman has been using any type of drugs, she should have a discussion with the doctor to determine what is safe to use and what needs to be stopped.