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Can you fire a pregnant worker for violating dress code?

On Behalf of | Sep 2, 2022 | workplace discrimination |

Unfortunately, to this day, protected groups under the law find themselves facing discrimination in the workplace. Of course, this also includes pregnant workers.

Some of the manifestations of discrimination against pregnant workers take a surprising form, though. For example, it can manifest even through the lens of the dress code.

Textbook discrimination via dress code firing

The New York Times talks about pregnant workers and their rights. Of course, at its basic core concept, the protection of pregnant workers aims to keep employers from firing workers just because they are pregnant.

As such, firing a worker over dress code violations fits the bill perfectly for a discrimination case. Say a worker can no longer fit into her uniform due to her pregnancy and thus chooses to use another outfit for the time being. An employer may think that it is within their rights to fire her for refusing to adhere to the dress code.

In reality, this is a textbook example of using a worker’s pregnancy against them in order to get them fired. If this pregnant worker was not pregnant, she would not have violated the dress code and would not have gotten fired.

Arming workers with knowledge

Many pregnant workers do not understand that their rights are protected to this degree or in these specific contexts. As such, it is important for information to get disseminated among workers so they are more aware of their rights.

If a pregnant worker were to face such a situation, they should consider the legal options that they could take moving forward to gain compensation for the discrimination that they suffered through.