Camila Alves Worried That Being Pregnant Would Ruin Her Modeling Career

belly in bikiniMoms-to-be have a lot to worry about. We pray our babies grow big and strong in our bellies, fret over the safest crib and car seats. We also worry about work. Mostly it's thoughts like, "How will I get through a long work day feeling nauseated or exhausted?" But for some pregnant women, a scarier question comes up: "Will I be able to hang on to this job?"

That is what model Camila Alves McConaughey feared when she learned she was pregnant with her third child with actor Matthew McConaughey.

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She had signed on as the face of Macy's clothing line I.N.C. International Concepts a short time before learning about her bun in the oven. "I was over the moon, but my first reaction was that it was going to be a deal-breaker for the campaign -- that they wouldn't want a pregnant mom -- but we worked it out," she told People.

It's a legitimate fear. Many people don't realize this, but pregnant women lose their jobs all the time. Employees often get away with it by citing poor work performance. For example, a saleswoman was fired from a national department store chain because she was repeatedly tardy due to severe morning sickness. A real estate company "job-eliminated" a woman on maternity leave who was receiving treatment for postpartum depression at the time. In another instance, a company placed a pregnant lab tech on unpaid leave because her work involved exposure to toxic chemicals. Why couldn't they have given her desk duty until she delivered?

In 2011, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission had nearly 6,000 pregnancy discrimination complaints, but these cases are hard to prove. So advocates want pregnancy to be considered a disability so that women will be protected under the Americans With Disabilities Act. A handful of states require companies to make accommodations for pregnant women, but most states do not.

What these expectant moms lose is more than just a paycheck. That also means their medical insurance benefits are out the door too. Camila is much luckier, of course. She is married to one of the biggest stars on the planet. Aside from the fact that she already has financial security, chances are, because her hubby is such a marquee name actor, she would never be dropped as a spokesmodel. Nevertheless, job security is something no expectant mom should have to worry about. It's just immoral and wrong.

Do you know of a pregnant woman who lost her job?

 

Image via flequi/Flickr

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