One of the main issues that women have to grapple with, in the U.S. workforce is the right to work on equal terms. Women often face discrimination and unfair treatment. The part of protecting themselves from unfair treatment at the workplace is to know all the key women’s rights in the workplace. These workplace laws are common regardless of whatever industries you belong to.
Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA)
This act was passed right during the Great Depression to improve working conditions. This act included several things such as the maximum hour work week, a minimum wage, overtime pay, and banned child labor. However, this law is not gender-specific in the true sense of the word.
Since the passing of the law in 1938, the FLSA has undergone numerous amendments. Yes, there have been over 20 amendments so far. It reinstates the difference between the part-time and full-time workers also the difference between the salary vs. hourly-paid workers. The act now may need a 40-hour maximum workweek and increase the minimum wage.
Title VII of the Civil Rights Act
This Civil Rights Act emphasizes the importance of equality. Title VII of this act points out to employers that they should not discriminate based on race, color, religion, national origin, or more.
This law enunciates that employers cannot mistreat employees. This is especially when hiring or when the employees make their way out of the workforce. With this act, women are protected against gender discrimination.
The Pregnancy Discrimination Act (1978)
There has been plenty of evidence of women being fired based on them being pregnant in the past. The employers think that they would save big on health care costs.
But they also thought that they would employ other temporary help while the pregnant women took a break. It was a gross injustice, which the amendment to the Civil Rights Act fixed. The discrimination saved many women from losing their jobs just because they were pregnant.
Equal Pay Act (1963)
While most women may feel that they do not get Equal Pay at various workplaces, they would be surprised to know a law to protect them.
This act emphasizes that companies need to pay women the exact amount men receive for doing the same job. But this goal is still a distant dream in most areas. While this act has not been realized full-fledged, at least 100 % of it, this was a large step in fulfilling this elusive dream.
The Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act (COBRA)
This Act is important for most women, especially mothers. This Act falls under the paradigm of COBRA. In this Act, employers will enjoy health insurance benefits long after they lose their jobs.
This especially holds if the employee is fired, making a job change, or is battling some unusual situation. It acts as a protective coverage for women undergoing a career change.
The Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA)
The Family and Medical Leave Act is for families who take emergency leaves based on medical conditions. This law, which came into effect in 1993, also covers leaves to take care of a newborn child.
A company with more than 50 employees will have to follow this act, which can give 12 weeks of unpaid medical leave to people suffering from chronic medical problems. It also holds for new parents as they need time to bond with their newborn or adopted child. The employee will continue to earn health benefits. And it applies even while they are away and will retain their position after a break.
The Whistleblower Protection Act
The Whistleblower Protection Act provides workers’ a safe working environment. It also provides a protective atmosphere against unsafe working conditions against retaliation. This act provides a protective law against women’s rights at work, ensuring women report against discrimination. It can also get them the money recovered or damages as won in a lawsuit.
As a female employee, you need to know all the workplace laws. These also help women stay on a fair and equal footing, especially when facing discrimination at the workplace. The laws can also allow them to contest the discrimination they face at work.
How many of these laws were you aware of? Knowing the local laws is the first step to having a healthy workplace. So, make sure you share this blog with all your loved ones!