Expectant mothers in Illinois will have some new protections at work. The governor signed a law Tuesday that gives pregnant women some accommodations like limiting heavy lifting, more frequent bathroom breaks, and being able to sit down while working if possible. State Rep. Mary Flowers (D-Chicago) says current laws protect only female firefighters and police officers, while other women may choose to hide their pregnancy from their employer.
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“No woman should have to suffer the indignation of losing her job, being disrespected, her unborn child unprotected, because an employer refused to make reasonable accommodation,” Flowers said. The original bill had initially met some resistance in the legislature over concerns it would raise costs and invite lawsuits on employers. The law goes into effect next year.