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Florida breastfeeding moms have workplace rights

On Behalf of | Apr 25, 2024 | Uncategorized |

New mothers returning to the workforce shouldn’t have to choose between doing their job duties and feeding their new babies. One way that federal laws help them avoid this conundrum is by providing legal protections for breastfeeding in the workplace.

Pregnant women should start to learn about these safeguards while they are still expecting so they know what to expect when they return to work. These protections usually apply for the first year of a baby’s life.

What protections do breastfeeding women have?

Breastfeeding women have the right to pump at work as they need to. This will likely be more often when the baby is still young because the mother’s milk supply is still being established. As the baby gets older and the milk supply becomes more established, she’ll likely need to breastfeed less frequently. The breaks that a woman takes don’t have to be paid unless an employer provides paid breaks for others. The breastfeeding mother isn’t required to have any extra breaks that aren’t provided to others.

What type of space are employers required to provide?

Employers are required to provide a space that’s not in the bathroom for the woman to pump breastmilk. The space must be private and free from interruption. If the space is used for something else, it must be made available for the woman when she needs to use it.

Are there any employers who are exempt to this requirement?

All employers are covered by the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), which is where the right to pump at work is found. The exception to this is if the employer has fewer than 50 employees. In that case, the only way the employer can be exempt from the requirement is if they can prove that enforcing the break rule is an undue hardship on their business.

Compliance with breastfeeding rights at work must be made a priority if a company has breastfeeding mothers on staff. Employees have the right to take legal action if they are denied the breaks they are due for breastfeeding; however, employers can prevent that by maintaining compliance proactively. Legal counsel can assist with ensuring compliance by providing guidance to establish rules and policies for a business accordingly. Counsel can also help with enforcement concerns if employees are not provided the accommodations that they are due.