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What rights do breastfeeding workers have?

In California, there are robust protections and accommodations for breastfeeding mothers in the workplace. These regulations create a supportive and inclusive environment to ensure that employees don’t have to choose between their job and their child’s nutritional needs.

California labor law requires that employers provide time for a mother to pump breast milk. This requirement isn’t limited to a specific timeframe post-birth, implying that as long as a mother needs to breastfeed, her rights are protected under this law. These break times must be reasonable, and they may generally occur concurrently with the breaks already provided. This enables the woman to pump while having as little impact on a company as possible.

Workplace accommodations

Employers in California must provide the employee with a dedicated place to pump. This space can’t be a bathroom, and it must be shielded from the view of others. There must also be a way to prevent others from intruding on the woman when she’s pumping.

Legal protections

California law stipulates that employers can’t discriminate or retaliate against employees for exercising their rights under these provisions to protect breastfeeding mothers. This protection is critical in creating a culture of respect and understanding towards breastfeeding employees so they feel secure in their employment while attending to the needs of their infant.

Any breastfeeding mother who discovers her employer isn’t following the laws regarding pumping for her infant may decide to take action. Working with someone familiar with these matters is beneficial to better ensure that a woman knows her options and can develop a plan to handle the situation as effectively as possible.


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