As of June 27, 2023, the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act (PWFA) is in effect.
The PWFA requires covered employers to provide employees with reasonable accommodations related to pregnancy, childbirth, or related medical conditions. The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has updated its employment poster to reflect this new law. Employers must post this new version, which is available here for employers to download/print or to provide electronically to employees: “Know Your Rights: Workplace Discrimination is Illegal” Poster | U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (eeoc.gov)
The latest poster is the second update in less than a year to EEOC's mandatory workplace poster, which informs employees of their rights and protections. Employers must post this new version of the poster in their office spaces as soon as practicable.
The latest "Know Your Rights" flyer, which replaces the previous "EEOC is Law" poster, must be displayed in all workplaces covered by the agency's jurisdiction. This includes private sector businesses with 15 or more employees, as well as state and local government agencies, educational institutions, unions, and staffing agencies.
The new poster includes several updates from the older version. Some of the main changes are:
- Clarification that sex discrimination includes discrimination based on pregnancy and related conditions, sexual orientation, or gender identity;
- Identifies harassment as a prohibited form of discrimination;
- Provides information about equal pay discrimination for federal contractors; and
- Uses more straightforward language and formatting.
The poster also includes a QR code for employees with a smartphone or other compatible devices to quickly access the EEOC's website on how to file a charge of employment discrimination.
What's Remained the Same?
While the poster has been updated, some of the information included remains the same. The bulletin still outlines the types of discrimination that are prohibited by federal law, such as:
- Race, color, sex (including pregnancy and related conditions, sexual orientation, or gender identity), national origin, religion,
- Age (40 and older),
- Equal pay,
- Genetic information (including family medical history or genetic tests or services), and includes
- Retaliation for filing a charge, reasonably opposing discrimination, or participating in a discrimination lawsuit, investigation, or proceeding.
Actions Employers Should Take
Employers who fail to post the new Know Your Rights poster could face noncompliance penalties from the EEOC. Therefore, businesses must take the time to update their posters as soon as possible.
On October 25, 2022, the EEOC distributed an FAQ stating that employers should remove the old poster and display the new one "within a reasonable amount of time" but did not provide a specific deadline.
The agency recommends that employers post the new flyer in a conspicuous place where employees will see it, such as in a break room or near the time clock. Covered employers should also consider posting an online notice on their website for remote or hybrid workers.
If you have questions about the new poster or other workplace compliance issues, contact a member of our Labor and Employment Team for guidance.
Editor's note: The article was first published on October 226, 2022, and updated on June 27, 2023, to reflect the latest information regarding the PWFA Act.
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This article is not intended to give, and should not be relied upon for, legal advice in any particular circumstance or fact situation. No action should be taken in reliance upon the information contained in this article without obtaining the advice of an attorney.