senate Bill S1479

2013-2014 Legislative Session

Requires the provisions of reasonable accommodations for pregnant women

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Archive: Last Bill Status - In Committee


  • Introduced
  • In Committee
  • On Floor Calendar
    • Passed Senate
    • Passed Assembly
  • Delivered to Governor
  • Signed/Vetoed by Governor

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Actions

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Assembly Actions - Lowercase
Senate Actions - UPPERCASE
Jan 08, 2014 referred to investigations and government operations
Jan 09, 2013 referred to investigations and government operations

Co-Sponsors

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S1479 - Bill Details

Current Committee:
Senate Investigations And Government Operations
Law Section:
Executive Law
Laws Affected:
Amd §§292 & 296, Exec L
Versions Introduced in 2011-2012 Legislative Session:
S6273

S1479 - Bill Texts

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Requires the provisions of reasonable accommodations for pregnant women.

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BILL NUMBER:S1479

TITLE OF BILL:
An act
to amend the executive law, in relation to requiring the provisions of
reasonable accommodations for pregnant women

SUMMARY OF SPECIFIC PROVISIONS:
Section 1 amends section 292, subdivision 21-e
of the Executive Law to expand the
definition of 'reasonable accommodation' to include actions taken by
an employer to address the needs of employees who are pregnant.

Section 2 amends section 296, subdivision one of
the Executive Law to make it illegal
to refuse to provide reasonable accommodation to an employee for
conditions related to pregnancy.

Section 3 establishes the effective date.

JUSTIFICATION:
Current workplace laws are inadequate to protect pregnant New Yorkers
from being forced out or fired when they need a simple, reasonable
accommodation in order to stay on the job. Many pregnant women are
single mothers or the primary breadwinners for their families -if
they lose their jobs then the whole family will suffer, including
newborns and older children. This is not an outcome that families can
afford in today's difficult economy.

Under New York Law, employers are not required to make reasonable
accommodations for pregnant women (unless she has a pregnancy related
disability). As a result, pregnant women are often forced to take
unpaid leave or are fired for requesting a small accommodation. For
example, a New York waitress can be fired because she is 8 months
pregnant and needs more frequent restroom breaks.

The reasonable accommodation framework has worked for employers who
are required to accommodate people with disabilities. Unlike most
disabilities, pregnancy is only temporary, and pregnancy
accommodations are often less costly to employers since additional
equipment is usually unnecessary.
California has enacted similar legislation. The most frequent
accommodations involve limits on lifting, access to places to sit,
and more frequent bathroom breaks.

Working during pregnancy can be a beneficial choice for many women. By
working extra months, women can earn additional income and achieve
increased seniority. Moreover, women who work during pregnancy may be
able to take a longer period of leave following childbirth, which in
turn facilitates breastfeeding, bonding with and caring for a new
child, and recovering from childbirth. Pregnant women who are forced

to leave their jobs often have no choice but to use government
resources such as public assistance, Medicaid
and WIC, draining taxpayer funds. A pregnancy reasonable accommodation
law can lead to taxpayer savings while also keeping women in the
workforce.

FISCAL IMPLICATIONS TO THE STATE:
Minimal.

EFFECTIVE DATE:
This act shall take effect on the thirtieth day after it shall have
become a law.

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                    S T A T E   O F   N E W   Y O R K
________________________________________________________________________

                                  1479

                       2013-2014 Regular Sessions

                            I N  S E N A T E

                               (PREFILED)

                             January 9, 2013
                               ___________

Introduced  by  Sens.  KRUEGER, ADAMS, DILAN, HASSELL-THOMPSON, HOYLMAN,
  MONTGOMERY, PARKER, SERRANO -- read twice  and  ordered  printed,  and
  when  printed  to  be committed to the Committee on Investigations and
  Government Operations

AN ACT to  amend  the  executive  law,  in  relation  to  requiring  the
  provisions of reasonable accommodations for pregnant women

  THE  PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM-
BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS:

  Section 1. Subdivision 21-e of section 292 of the  executive  law,  as
added by chapter 269 of the laws of 1997, is amended to read as follows:
  21-e.  The  term  "reasonable accommodation" means actions taken which
permit an employee, prospective employee or member with a disability,  A
CONDITION  RELATING TO PREGNANCY, CHILDBIRTH OR A RELATED MEDICAL CONDI-
TION, to perform in a reasonable manner the activities involved  in  the
job  or  occupation  sought or held and include, but are not limited to,
provision of an accessible  worksite,  acquisition  or  modification  of
equipment, support services for persons with impaired hearing or vision,
job  restructuring  and modified work schedules; provided, however, that
such actions do not impose an undue hardship on the business, program or
enterprise of the entity from which action is requested.
  S 2. Subdivision 1 of section 296 of the executive law is  amended  by
adding a new paragraph (h) to read as follows:
  (H) FOR AN EMPLOYER TO REFUSE TO PROVIDE REASONABLE ACCOMMODATIONS FOR
AN  EMPLOYEE  FOR CONDITIONS RELATED TO PREGNANCY, CHILDBIRTH OR RELATED
MEDICAL CONDITIONS, IF SHE SO REQUESTS, WITH THE ADVICE OF  HER  HEALTH-
CARE PROVIDER.
  S  3.  This  act shall take effect on the thirtieth day after it shall
have become a law.

 EXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
                      [ ] is old law to be omitted.
                                                           LBD01243-01-3

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