Congressmen Cohen Votes for Pregnant Workers Fairness Act

September 17, 2020
Press Release
Warehouse in Memphis drew national attention to pregnant workers’ plight

MEMPHIS – Congressman Steve Cohen (TN-09) today voted for, and the House passed, the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act, which would prohibit an employer from requiring a pregnant worker to accept an accommodation that she didn’t agree to and from retaliating against a worker for requesting or using a reasonable accommodation. Employers also could not deny employment opportunities based on the need for reasonable accommodations or require an employee to take paid or unpaid leave instead of providing a reasonable accommodation.

The vote was 329 to 73.

Congressman Cohen made the following statement:

“This meaningful legislation will protect pregnant workers and prevent the suffering caused by insufficient workplace protections, a situation far too familiar to many workers who call Memphis home. Two years ago, I was shocked to read of the disturbing workplace abuses occurring in an XPO Logistics warehouse in Memphis. Warehouse workers were denied minor and reasonable accommodations like less taxing workloads and shortened work shifts. As a result, several women suffered miscarriages, some while still on the warehouse floor.  

“I, along with Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro and ninety-five of my colleagues, wrote to the Education and Labor Committee to urge the 115th Congress to take decisive action and consider the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act. I’m pleased House Democrats recognized the importance of this legislation in the 116th Congress, and I am proud to vote for it today. I hope to see its swift implementation.”