Michigan Tech Resources
Michigan Tech has the following resources available for pregnant and/or parenting students, along with faculty and staff:
- Graduate Student Parental Leave | Graduate School
- Faculty Handbook 18.104.22.168 Paid Parental Leave
- Faculty and Staff Parental Leave Request Form
Michigan Tech Policies and additional resources:
- Lactation Spaces - On campus – also a map of places on campus to express milk or breastfeed.
- Dependent Care - University policy that may allow for reimbursement of dependent care expenses above and beyond regular dependent care costs that directly result from travel on University business.
- Children in the Workplace Policy - University policy to ensure the safety of children in the workplace.
- Graduate Student Medical Withdrawal - Withdrawal and leave for graduate students to take time off for medical treatment.
Additional external resources:
- The Pregnant Scholar – A Title IX resource outlining federally protected accommodations.
- Childcare Center Locator – A national resource, and located on a health and resources page for the UP.
- Harvard Business Review - 5 Ways Managers Can Support Pregnant Employees - An article with suggestions to reduce detrimental health and well-being outcomes for pregnant faculty, staff, students, and their babies.
- What to Expect When Expecting in a Lab: A Review of Unique Risks and Resources for Pregnant Researchers in the Chemical Laboratory- An article that critically examines risks associated with pregnant individuals working in a lab setting and provides guidance to protect those pregnant lab workers.
Any pregnant individual is encouraged to notify appropriate campus personnel in order to receive available resources.
Pregnancy and Parenting Discrimination
At Michigan Tech, we have definitions for pregnancy and parenting discrimination.
- Pregnancy Discrimination is discrimination on the basis of pregnancy, childbirth, false pregnancy, termination of a pregnancy, or recovery therefrom. It can occur when persons are excluded from participation in, or denied the benefits of, any university program or activity because of their pregnancy unless they request voluntarily to participate in a separate portion of the program or activity or choose to not so.
- Parenting Discrimination is based on rules concerning parental, family, or marital status. These rules may not be applied differently based on sex or gender. For example, universities cannot provide women with time to bond with or care for their children and not men.
Any person who believes that they may have been subjected to harassment or discrimination on the basis of protected class in the provision of services, programs, activities, employment decisions, or benefits of Michigan Tech may file a grievance. Violations of state and federal law and/or the policies of Michigan Tech could lead to discipline and possible dismissal. There are many ways to file a report: Report a concern
Federal Regulation Updates
In December 2022, President Biden signed into law two pieces of legislation expanding federal protections for both pregnant and nursing workers:
- Providing Urgent Maternal Protections for Nursing Mothers (PUMP) Act expands protections for employees who are nursing and requires employers to provide
Reasonable break time for nursing employees to pump breast milk during the workday. Lactation breaks for non-exempt employees may be unpaid, except: 1) If the nursing employee is not completely relieved from duty; 2) if employers pay co-workers for similar breaks; or 3) when breast milk is expressed during paid breaks. Exempt employees must be paid their full weekly salary, regardless of whether they take breaks to express breast milk.
- A private place, other than a restroom, that nursing workers may use to express breast milk. Michigan Tech currently has several lactation spaces available across campus. In some circumstances, a private office with a locking door may also be appropriate.These protections are available to employees for up to one year following the birth of an employee's child. The PUMP Act largely took effect December 29, 2022, but changes to remedies took effect April 28, 2023.
- Pregnant Workers Fairness Act (PWFA) requires employers to provide reasonable accommodations to address a worker’s known limitations due to pregnancy, childbirth, and related conditions. The PWFA's accommodation provisions are based on the American with Disabilities Act (ADA). However, while the ADA covers employees with "disabilities", the PWFA protects employees with "known limitations" related to pregnancy, childbirth, and related conditions. Also, unlike the ADA, an employer may temporarily have to eliminate an essential job function under the PWFA if requested and after the interactive process with the ADA Coordinator. The ADA Coordinator can be reached at email@example.com or 906-487-3310.
Michigan Tech supports pregnant and parenting employees and students. As a supervisor, should you have questions or need clarification regarding how to compensate or best accommodate pregnant and nursing employees, please visit Benefit Services for more information or contact your Human Resources representative.
Per the Office for Civil Rights in the U.S. Department of Education:
The Office for Civil Rights (OCR) in the U.S. Department of Education (ED) is responsible for enforcing laws prohibiting discrimination in federally assisted educational programs and activities. These laws include Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 (Title IX), which prohibits discrimination based on sex in education programs or activities. All public and private educational institutions that receive any federal financial assistance must comply with this law. Title IX protects students in all of the academic, educational, extracurricular, athletic, and other programs or activities of schools. This includes prohibiting discrimination against pregnant and parenting students.
Title IX provides that: No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance.
ED’s regulation implementing Title IX specifically prohibits discrimination against a student based on pregnancy, childbirth, false pregnancy, termination of pregnancy, or recovery from any of these conditions. The Title IX regulation also prohibits a school from applying any rule related to a student’s parental, family, or marital status that treats students differently based on their sex.
Under Title IX, it is illegal for schools to exclude a pregnant student from participating in any part of an educational program. This prohibition applies to specific classes such as advanced placement or honors classes, extracurricular programs, interscholastic sports, honor societies, and opportunities for student leadership, among other activities. Schools may implement special instructional programs or classes for a pregnant student, but participation must be completely voluntary on the part of the student, and the programs and classes must be comparable to those offered to other students.
In addition, a school must excuse a student’s absences because of pregnancy or childbirth for as long as the student’s doctor deems the absences medically necessary. When a student returns to school, she must be allowed to return to the same academic and extracurricular status as before her medical leave began.
- Any special services provided to students who have temporary medical conditions must also be provided to a pregnant student. Therefore, if a school provides special services, such as homebound instruction or tutoring, for students who miss school because they have a temporary medical condition, it must do the same for a student who misses school because of pregnancy or childbirth.
- A school may require a pregnant student or student who has given birth to submit medical certification for school participation only if the school also requires such certification from all students with physical or emotional conditions requiring the attention of a physician. Thus, for example, a student who has been hospitalized for childbirth must not be required to submit a medical certificate to return to school if a certificate is not required of students who have been hospitalized for other conditions.