While pregnant, a primary concern for a mom-to-be is the health of her pregnancy. The instant that baby arrives, her list of concerns grows from one to many – and it’s about way more than all the diapers and late-night feedings. Moms worry about giving their kids the best possible education, keeping them safe, raising them to be good people, getting them set up for the future, and on and on.
So with all that on her plate, the last thing a mom or mom-to-be needs to worry about is losing her job, being mistreated at work, or being perceived as a less productive employee – just because she’s a mom or mom-to-be.
This week we honored moms and moms-to-be with an event on Capitol Hill to bring awareness to the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act. If it becomes law, PWFA would explicitly require employers to make the same sorts of accommodations for limitations arising out of pregnancy, childbirth, and related medical conditions that they are already required to make for limitations arising out of disabilities. The highlights of our pre-Mother’s Day gathering were a giant cake, cute kids, beautiful bellies, and some special guests. Take a look:
The event kicked off with Senators Blumenthal (CT) and Casey (from my home state of PA!) as the first to arrive. They headed straight for the kids’ table to check out the beautiful artwork being created.
Before addressing the audience, each Senator signed our seven-foot tall Mother’s Day card, a true show of their support for moms-to-be on the job.
The West Coast was represented too, when Senator Merkley (OR), one of the early co-sponsors of the bill, stopped by to sign our card to all the moms.
After signing, each of the Senators spoke about the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act, and why it’s important not just for women, but for the families who depend on them.
We were also joined by Rep. Nadler (NY), lead sponsor for the House version of PWFA, who spoke about why he wrote this bill. He then signed our giant card next to his name.
A great photo with the champions of PWFA and supporters, including moms and moms-to-be:
…and their kids.
Thanks to Sen. Shaheen (NH) who initially introduced the Senate bill along with Sen. Casey in 2012 and who made time to come by even though her energy bill was on the Senate floor yesterday—but what better way to honor moms than to juggle a lot of demands simultaneously!
She took the extra time to meet every mother and mother-to-be in attendance, and their children too!
Before the event ended, attendees enjoyed cake, talked, and enjoyed watching the children play, which is appropriate, since one of the purposes of the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act is to help make sure moms have healthy pregnancies, and can bring healthy children into this world.
Happy Mother’s Day to all the moms and moms-to-be!