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Exclusion may be a sign of pregnancy discrimination

Like many other expecting mothers in the Bay Area, you take your career seriously. While you expect your employer to reasonably accommodate your pregnancy, you plan to work hard until and after your baby comes into the world. Unfortunately, though, your employer may use your pregnancy as a reason to discriminate against you.

If your employer terminates your employment immediately after you confirm your pregnancy, discrimination is likely to blame. Still, some signs of pregnancy discrimination are harder to identify. With many women, isolation and exclusion are the first red flags that something may be amiss. You must realize, though, that discrimination-related exclusion may take a variety of forms.

Social exclusion 

You probably work with management, colleagues, clients and others virtually every day. If doing your job effectively requires social interaction, exclusion may be disastrous. That is, if your manager excludes you from important meetings, sales events, conferences or networking functions, achieving professional success may become virtually impossible.

Information exclusion 

For good reason, organizations limit access to information. While you may have relevant information to do your job, you probably do not know everything about your company. During your pregnancy, though, your managers or colleagues may discriminate against you by excluding you from the information that you need to perform job tasks. If you suddenly lose access to meetings, internal data or training opportunities, your employer may be engaging in impermissible workplace discrimination.

Opportunity exclusion 

Because your career is important to you, you may be constantly on the search for additional responsibilities or other opportunities. If your employer refuses to offer you chances for professional growth during or after your pregnancy, you may be the victim of discrimination. This is particularly true if you had an opportunity for advancement before your pregnancy.

While pregnancy discrimination is sometimes clear-cut, it is often subtle. As such, you must watch closely for disparate treatment. If you notice the warning signs of exclusion, you likely must act quickly both to protect your career and to take advantage of available legal remedies.

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