|Posted:||June 30, 2021 04:17 PM|
|From:||Representative Mary Jo Daley|
|To:||All House members|
|Subject:||Nursing Mothers Workplace Accommodations|
|According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, the nutrients in breast milk helps protect babies from illnesses and infections. For mothers, breastfeeding is linked to a lower risk of health problems such as diabetes, breast and ovarian cancers, and postpartum depression.
The federal Fair Labor Standards Act requires employers to provide a private, sanitary space for non-exempt employees to express milk for up to one year after the birth of a child. However, this law does not go far enough to provide the needed supports for new mothers and their infants.
This legislation will supplement the Fair Labor Standards Act to fill in the gaps. First, it will apply to all employees, including those that are exempt from federal provisions. Secondly, the bill will require employers to provide a private, sanitary space for mothers to express milk beyond one year after birth. My legislation will mirror the federal provision that exempts small employers from these requirements if they would present an undue hardship to the employer.
The health benefits of breastfeeding for both mothers and children cannot be overstated. It is long overdue for Pennsylvania to join the nearly two dozen other states that ensure the safety, privacy, and health of new mothers and their babies.
I invite all members to co-sponsor this commonsense approach to improving the health and welfare of women and children alike.
Introduced as HB1739