Breastfeeding is the most natural thing in the world—after all, our bodies were built to feed our babies. And yet, public breastfeeding continues to be a hot-button issue. Whether in a store or at the park, when people spot a mother nursing her child while out and about, it often sparks a debate.
Health professionals and public health officials promote breastfeeding to improve infant health. Both mothers and children benefit from breast milk. Breastfed children have fewer ear, respiratory and urinary tract infections and have diarrhea less often.
Is there a federal law that protects breastfeeding moms in the workplace? This legislation requires that employers provide a reasonable break time for women to express milk after the birth of a child. The amendment also requires that employers provide employees with a space to express milk.
If you're breastfeeding your child, do you have a right to pump milk at work? Under federal law, the answer is a rather complicated "maybe. Although many workplaces now provide lactation rooms and staggered breaks for breastfeeding mothers, they're often doing so voluntarily as a good business practice to help retain female employees and not as a matter of law.
All A-Z health topics. View all pages in this section. These accommodations include time for women to express milk and a private space that is not a bathroom each time they need to pump.
For those of us here in Wisconsin who swear by the health benefits of breast milk, was a good year. And a new federal law has recognized the reality that many employees will want to continue breastfeeding even after returning to work. To make life easier for these employees, the Fair Labor Standards Act now requires employers to provide accommodation for nursing mothers.
Effective March 23,this federal law requires employers to provide break time and a place for most hourly wage-earning and some salaried employees nonexempt workers to express breast milk at work. The law states that employers must provide a "reasonable" amount of time and that they must provide a private space other than a bathroom. They are required to provide this until the employee's baby turns one year old. B a place, other than a bathroom, that is shielded from view and free from intrusion from coworkers and the public, which may be used by an employee to express breast milk.
Let friends in your social network know what you are reading about. Idaho and Utah recently passed legislation, making breastfeeding in public legal in all 50 states. Doubtful the shaming will stop though.
The "Break Time for Nursing Mothers" law does not require pumping breaks to be paid. However, if your employer already offers paid breaks and you use those breaks to pump your milk, your time should be paid in the usual way. If you need extra time beyond what is usually allowed for these paid breaks, then the additional time does not need to be paid and your employer might ask you to "punch out" for the additional time.