I'm newly pregnant, and my workplace is a large government department with some fairly generous paid maternity leave conditions.

They're also currently doing redundancies.

I would prefer to tell my workplace around the middle or end of the second trimester (in case of complications), but would it be to my advantage to tell them now?

I figure in the next couple of months, I'm going to start showing anyway so managers will suspect regardless. However, I figure if I tell them and organize my maternity leave arrangements, they can't claim to not know, and as they did not know, claim that me being pregnant had nothing to do with their decision.

Also, being a government workplace, would there be some form of "reverse discrimination" in my favour because it may be messier or more controversial to get rid of someone while they're pregnant (e.g. potentially get sued for sexual discrimination)?

All things being equal, would a pregnant worker be less or more likely to be made redundant than a non-pregnant worker in the same job, salary and location?

  • Are there any laws in your countries stating when you have to state you're pregnant? Are you protected from firing during pregnancy? – mart Jun 12 '14 at 8:36
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    In some states once you arrange maternity leave you're protected for the duration of your maternity leave. That being said they could let you go the very second that leave ends. – Eric J Fisher Jun 12 '14 at 15:47

All things being equal, would a pregnant worker be less or more likely to be made redundant than a non-pregnant worker in the same job, salary and location?

I don't think we can answer this specific question authoritatively. You'll have to check with your HR, and if you are a member of a government employee union, that you contact them and ask them first before you talk to HR - That's because the union is inherently on your side and is your advocate. At some point, as soon as possible, after you have talked to your union and HR, you'll need to tell your management, especially since they may have some discretion as to whom they can lay off and when. The sooner everyone knows, the better they can plan for it. I suggest that you start getting the wheels in motion by contacting your union immediately, as time and timing are of the essence.

I used to work for a firm where I didn't think much of the head of Accounting. But he, at least, had the decency to wait until his newlywed employee gave birth before he laid her off. This is one occasion where I wish I had not spurned the offer to become a partner at the firm in exchange for wearing a suit once in a while. Because I would have spoken up for her.

I presume that if your management knows about your condition, they'll act a little bit better than the head of Accounting of my firm did.


It may have no impact on whether you are selected to be redundant. It may be determined by factors such as time in grade, performance appraisals, and particular job.

And it should not be a factor. To keep you because you are pregnant is highly offensive to me (and I am female). Everyone has personal reasons why now is not a good time to get laid off, pregnancy is not more important than bills to pay, existing children to feed, a sick mom to take care of etc.

A bad boss might even see it as a reason to make sure you are on the list since you would be out on maternity leave and they won't have anyone to cover for you.

Frankly you should not tell your boss until you were ready to tell him anyway. Many first trimester pregnancies end in a miscarriage - don't announce you are pregnant until the second trimester.

  • You may be offended, but she needs the medical benefits. Unfortunately, we are not Europe, Canada, Australia, Taiwan or Singapore where the social safety net is stronger. – Vietnhi Phuvan Jun 12 '14 at 20:08
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    Sorry I have seen people with cancer laid off and they needed the insurance too. Pregnacy is no different. – HLGEM Jun 12 '14 at 21:34

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