Biden Administration's New Proposed Title IX Regulations Will Help Protect Pregnant Workers

Statement of Jocelyn C. Frye, President, National Partnership for Women & Families

"On the 50th anniversary of Title IX, the Department of Education released proposed regulations providing long overdue clarification of the protections for survivors of sexual violence and LGBTQ+ students under Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972. The regulations include strong protections for pregnant employees of covered educational institutions and pregnant students who attend federally-funded educational institutions.

"The announcement is a critical step forward to strengthen protections for pregnant workers who still risk being fired when asking for an accommodation on the job. For more than four decades, we have fought and advocated for protections for pregnant workers – first, with the Pregnancy Discrimination Act (PDA) and more recently with the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act (PWFA).

"And now, 50 years since Title IX, and nearly 45 years since the PDA, these regulations show that policies that support pregnant people are a priority for the Biden Administration. "Pregnant people deserve to have the ability to work without fear of discrimination or retaliation. They deserve the dignity of basic protections – like the ability to take bathroom breaks or keep a water bottle nearby – to ensure they can continue to earn income while experiencing a safe and healthy pregnancy and eventually a safe childbirth.

"With maternal mortality rates in the U.S. at their height – disproportionately affecting Black women – these basic pregnancy needs must be met. And Congress has the power to ensure that employers meet them.

"We commend the Biden Administration for their work on this important issue and hope to see the Administration continue to promote equitable educational opportunities for all students promised by Title IX by affirming the ability of transgender students to fully participate in school sports. We urge Congress to take the necessary steps – like the Department of Education has today – to ensure strong protections for all workers, and bring the bipartisan Pregnant Workers Fairness Act to a vote on the Senate floor."

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About the National Partnership

The National Partnership for Women & Families is a nonprofit, nonpartisan advocacy group dedicated to promoting fairness in the workplace, reproductive health and rights, access to quality, affordable health care and policies that help all people meet the dual demands of work and family. More information is available at NationalPartnership.org.

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