Gov. Pat Quinn on Tuesday signed into law a measure that will give added protections and necessary accommodations to women who are working while they are pregnant.
“No pregnant woman should have to choose between having her baby and keeping her job,” Quinn said at the bill signing on Tuesday. ”It’s making sure that there are reasonable accommodations by our employers for our employees who happen to be women who are pregnant.”
The new law, House Bill 8, was backed by the ACLU and sponsored by state Rep. Mary Flowers, D-Chicago, and state Sen. Toi Hutchinson, D-Chicago Heights, gives women right to carry a water bottle, sit on a stool, more bathroom breaks or allow them to skip lifting heavy boxes. It also allows time off to recover from childbirth and nursing space.
“The fact is about 80 percent of the women of our state who are pregnant continue on their job until the very last days of their pregnancy,” Quinn said. ”It’s important that our employers know that by law that accommodations oftentimes necessary for our pregnant moms.”