Breastfeeding State Laws

7/9/2020

Mother and BabyHealth professionals and public health officials promote breastfeeding to improve infant health.

Both mothers and children benefit from breast milk. Breast milk contains antibodies that protect infants from bacteria and viruses. Breastfed children have fewer ear, respiratory and urinary tract infections and have diarrhea less often. Infants who are exclusively breastfed tend to need fewer health care visits, prescriptions and hospitalizations resulting in a lower total medical care cost compared to never-breastfed infants.

Breastfeeding also provides long-term preventative effects for the mother, including an earlier return to pre-pregnancy weight and a reduced risk of pre-menopausal breast cancer and osteoporosis. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, nearly 84 percent of infants are ever breastfed and 25 percent are breastfed exclusively through six months. As a part of the Healthy People 2020 initiative, two national goals are to increase the proportion of infants who are breastfed at six months and infants who are breastfed exclusively through six months by the year 2020.   

Federal Health Reform and Nursing Mothers

President Obama signed the Affordable Care Act (ACA) on March 30, 2010. (See the combined full text of Public Laws 111-148 and 111-152 here.)  Among many provisions, Section 4207 of the law amends the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) of 1938 (29 U.S. Code 207) to require an employer to provide reasonable break time for an employee to express breast milk for her nursing child for one year after the child's birth each time such employee has need to express milk. The employer is not required to compensate an employee receiving reasonable break time for any work time spent for such purpose. The employer must also provide a place, other than a bathroom, for the employee to express breast milk.  If these requirements impose undue hardship, an employer that employs fewer than 50 employees is not subject to these requirements. The federal requirements shall not preempt a state law that provides greater protections to employees.

Congress passed Fairness for Breastfeeding Mothers Act of 2019 in July 2019. The law requires certain public health buildings to provide a shielded, hygienic space other than a bathroom, that contains a chair, working surface and an electrical outlet for use by members of the public to express milk. 

For more information:

In addition, the ACA requires new private health insurance plans, including those available in the new health insurance marketplaces, to provide coverage for specified women’s preventive health services with no cost sharing (e.g., copayment, coinsurance, or deductible). Breastfeeding support, supplies and lactation counseling are one of these specified preventive services.

For more information:

State Breastfeeding Laws

  • All fifty states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands have laws that specifically allow women to breastfeed in any public or private location.
  • Thirty-one states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands exempt breastfeeding from public indecency laws. (Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Florida, Idaho, Illinois, Kentucky, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nevada, New Hampshire, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Utah, Virginia, West Virginia, Washington, Wisconsin and Wyoming.)
  • Thirty-two states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico have laws related to breastfeeding in the workplace. (Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Georgia, Hawaii, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Mississippi, Montana, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Oregon, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington and Wyoming.)
  • Nineteen states and Puerto Rico exempt breastfeeding mothers from jury duty or allow jury service to be postponed. (California, Connecticut, Idaho, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New York, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Dakota, Utah and Virginia.)
  • Six states and Puerto Rico have implemented or encouraged the development of a breastfeeding awareness education campaign. (California, Illinois, Minnesota, Missouri, Mississippi and Vermont.)

Several states have unique laws related to breastfeeding. For instance,

  • Puerto Rico requires shopping malls, airports, public service government centers and other select locations to have accessible areas designed for breastfeeding and diaper changing that are not bathrooms. Louisiana's law requires certain state building to provide suitable areas for breastfeeding and lactation, and Illinois requires at least one mother's lactation room in the State Capitol. 
  • At least three states have laws related to child care facilities and breastfeeding. Louisiana prohibits any child care facility from discriminating against breastfed babies. Mississippi requires licensed child care facilities to provide breastfeeding mothers with a sanitary place that is not a toilet stall to breastfeed their children or express milk, to provide a refrigerator to store expressed milk, to train staff in the safe and proper storage and handling of human milk, and to display breastfeeding promotion information to the clients of the facility. Maryland requires child care centers to promote proper nutrition and developmentally appropriate practices by establishing training and policies promoting breastfeeding.
  • New Jersey exempts breast pumps, breast pump repair and replacement parts and other related items from the sales tax. Maryland exempts the sale of tangible personal property that is manufactured for the purpose of initiating, supporting or sustaining breastfeeding from the sales and use tax. Louisiana prohibits state sales or use tax from being applied to any consumer purchases of breastfeeding items.
  • California, New YorkTexas, Illinois and Connecticut have laws related to the procurement, processing, distribution, use or reimbursement of human milk.
  • New York created a Breastfeeding Mothers Bill of Rights, which is required to be posted in maternal health care facilities. New York also created a law that allows a child under one year of age to accompany the mother to a correctional facility if the mother is breastfeeding at the time she is committed.
  • California requires require schools operated by a school district or a county office of education, the California School for the Deaf, the California School for the Blind, and charter schools to provide reasonable accommodations to a lactating pupil on a high school campus to express breast milk, breastfeed an infant child, or address other needs related to breastfeeding.
  • Illinois requires a public school, including a charter school, to provide reasonable accommodations to a lactating pupil on a school campus to express breast milk, breastfeed an infant child, or address other needs related to breastfeeding; provides for grievance procedures.
  • Washington provides midwifery and doula services for incarcerated women, which may include support and assistance during labor and childbirth, prenatal and postpartum education, breastfeeding assistance, parenting education and support in the event that a woman has been or will become separated from her child.

The box allows you to conduct a full text search or use the dropdown menu option to select a state.

STATES SUMMARY OF STATUTES

Alabama

Ala. Code § 22-1-13 (2006) allows a mother to breastfeed her child in any public or private location.

Alaska

Alaska Stat. § 29.25.080 and § 01.10.060 (1998) prohibit a municipality from enacting an ordinance that prohibits or restricts a woman breastfeeding a child in a public or private location where the woman and child are otherwise authorized to be. The law clarifies that lewd conduct, lewd touching, immoral conduct, indecent conduct, and similar terms do not include the act of a woman breastfeeding a child in a public or private location where the woman and child are otherwise authorized to be.

 

2014 Alaska House Concurrent Resolution 18 (2014) encourages hospitals and birthing facilities in the state to participate in the Baby-Friendly Hospital Initiative and to support breastfeeding.

Arizona

Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann § 13-1402 (2006) specifies that indecent exposure does not include an act of breastfeeding by a mother.

 

Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann § 41-1443 (2006) entitles a mother to breastfeed in any public place or place of public accommodation where the mother is otherwise lawfully present.

Arkansas

Ark. Stat. Ann. § 20-27-2001(2007) states that a woman may breastfeed a child in a public place or any place where other individuals are present.

 

Ark. Stat. Ann. § 5-14-112 (2007) defines indecent exposure and specifies that a woman is not committing indecent exposure for breastfeeding a child in a public place or any place where other individuals are present.
 

Ark. Stat. Ann. § 11-5-116 (2009) requires an employer to provide reasonable unpaid break time each day to an employee who needs to express breast milk for her child and requires an employer to make a reasonable effort to provide a private, secure and sanitary room or other location other than a toilet stall where an employee can express her breast milk.

 

Ark. Stat. Ann. § 20-56-305 (2019) requires at least one of three statements to advertise medical marijuana, one of which warms about the potential harms to an unborn child or child following marijuana use during pregnancy or breastfeeding (SB 441). 

California

Cal. Government Code § 12920-12923 (1980) and § 12926 (2012) make it unlawful to engage in specified discriminatory practices on the basis of sex, which includes breastfeeding or medical conditions related to breastfeeding, in the opportunity to seek, obtain and hold employment or housing. 

 

Cal. Civil Code § 43.3 (1997) allows a mother to breastfeed her child in any location, public or private, except the private home or residence of another, where the mother and the child are otherwise authorized to be present. Cal. Welfare and Institutions Code § 11218 (2013) specifies an applicant or recipient of aide is entitled to breastfeed her child in a county welfare department or other county office. 

 

Cal. Health and Safety Code § 1647 (1999) declares that the procurement, processing, distribution or use of human milk for the purpose of human consumption is considered to be a rendition of a service rather than a sale of human milk.
 

Cal. Code of Civil Procedure § 210.5 (2000) requires the Judicial Court to adopt a standardized jury summons for use, which must include a specific reference to the rules for breastfeeding mothers. AB 1814 (2000) created the law and directs the Judicial Council to adopt a rule of court to allow the mother of a breastfed child to postpone jury duty for a period of up to one year and that after one year, jury duty may be further postponed upon written request by the mother.

 

Cal. Labor Code § 1030 et seq. (2001) provides that employers need to allow a break and provide a room for a mother who desires to express milk in private. AB 1976 (2018) requires an employer to make reasonable efforts to provide an employee with the use of a room or a location other than a bathroom, for these purposes. SB 142 (2019) requires the room or location other than a bathroom to have prescribed features. Features an employer, among other things, to provide access to a sink and refrigerator in close proximity to the employee's workspace. 

 

Cal. Health and Safety Code § 1648 (2006) requires a hospital that collects, processes, stores or distributes human milk collection from a mother exclusively for her own child to comply with the standards for collection, processing, storage or distribution of human milk by the Human Milk Banking Association of North America unless the department of health approves alternate standards. No screening tests are required to be performed on human milk collected from a mother exclusively for her own child.

 

Cal. Health and Safety Code § 123360 (2007) requires the Department of Public Health to include the promotion of mothers breastfeeding their infants in its public service campaign; and require the department to develop a model eight-hour training course and to promote exclusive breastfeeding and specify hospital staff for whom the training is appropriate.

 

Cal. Health and Safety Code § 1257.9 (2007) states the Department of Public Health shall recommend a minimum eight-hour training to appropriate staff in general acute care hospitals that provide maternity care and have exclusive patient breastfeeding rates in the lowest 25 percent of the state.

 

Cal. Government Code § 12926 (2012) states it is unlawful to engage in specified discriminatory practices in employment or housing accommodations on the basis of sex. The law provides that, for purposes of the act, the term sex also includes breastfeeding or medical conditions related to breastfeeding. 

 

Cal. Health and Safety Code § 123367 (2013) requires all acute care and special hospitals that have a perinatal unit to adopt the “Ten Steps to Successful Breastfeeding” of the Baby-Friendly Hospital Initiative, or an evidence-based alternative with targeted outcomes adopted by a health care service plan, or the Model Hospital Policy Recommendations as defined by § 123366.

 

Cal. Education Code § 222 (2015) requires schools operated by a school district or a county office of education, the California School for the Deaf, the California School for the Blink, and charter schools to provide reasonable accommodations to a lactating pupil on a high school campus to express breast milk, breastfeed an infant child, or address other needs related to breastfeeding.

 

Cal. Penal Code § 4002.5 (2018) requires a County Sheriff, or the Administrator of a county jail, to develop and implement an infant and toddler breast milk feeding policy for lactating inmates detained or sentenced to a county jail that is based on accepted best practices (AB 2507).

 

Cal. Ed Code § 66271.9 (2018) requires the Community Colleges and the State University, and encourages satellite campuses, to provide reasonable accommodations to a lactating student to express breast milk, breast feed an infant child, or address other needs related to breastfeeding. Requires educational institutions to provide a sink in the new construction, replacement, expansion or renovation, in addition to access to a private and secure room for breastfeeding students (AB 2785).

 

Cal. Public Utilities Code § 99176 (2019) requires multimodal transit stations that begin construction or a renovation on or after January 1, 2021, to include a lactation room (AB 752). 

Colorado

Colo. Rev. Stat. § 25-6-301 (2004) recognizes the benefits of breastfeeding and encourages mothers to breastfeed.

 

Colo. Rev. Stat. § 25-6-302 (2004) allows a mother to breastfeed in any place she has a right to be. 


Colo. Rev. Stat. § 8-13.5-102 and § 8-13.5-104 (2008) acknowledge benefits of breastfeeding and require an employer to provide reasonable break time for an employee to express breast milk for her nursing child for up to two years after the child's birth. The employer must make reasonable efforts to provide a place, other than a toilet stall, for the employee to express breast milk in privacy.  The law also requires the Department of Labor and Employment to provide, on its website, information and links to other websites where employers can access information regarding methods to accommodate nursing mothers in the workplace.

 

CO SB 224 (2019) allows the state agency in charge of licensing cannabis dispensaries to seek the assistance of the department of public health and environment on a range of issues, including the design of a warning sign for pregnant and breastfeeding women on the risks of using cannabis. 

Connecticut

Conn. Gen. Stat. § 46a-64 (1997) prohibits places of public accommodation, resort or amusement from restricting or limiting the right of a mother to breastfeed her child.

 

Conn. Gen. Stat. Ann. § 53-34b (1997) provides that no person may restrict or limit the right of a mother to breastfeed her child.

 

Conn. Gen. Stat. § 31-40w (2001) requires employers to provide a reasonable amount of time each day to an employee who needs to express breast milk for her infant child and to provide accommodations where an employee can express her milk in private.
 

Conn. Gen. Stat § 51-217b (2012) states the Judicial Branch will maintain a website providing prospective jurors with general information regarding jury service, including information for breastfeeding women regarding their ability to postpone jury service. The website will provide information for Jury Administration in the event a breastfeeding woman would like to request a reasonable accommodation. 

 

CT SB 13 (2018) requires the Department of Correction to establish prenatal, labor and postpartum services and supports, including a lactation policy, to women incarcerated at the York Correctional Institution. 

 

CT HB 5210 (2018) requires individual insurance policies to cover breastfeeding support and counseling for any pregnant or breastfeeding woman and breastfeeding supplies, including but not limited to, a breast pump for any breastfeeding woman.

 

Public Act 19-48 (2019) provides Medicaid reimbursement for donor breast milk deemed medically necessary. (HB 7165)

Delaware

Del. Code Ann. tit. 31 § 310 (1997) entitles a mother to breastfeed her child in any location of a place of public accommodation wherein the mother is otherwise permitted.

District of Columbia

D.C. Code Ann. § 2-1402.81 et seq. (2007) amend the Human Rights Act of 1977 to include breastfeeding as part of the definition of discrimination on the basis of sex, to ensure a woman's right to breastfeed her child in any location, public or private, where she has the right to be with her child.  The law provides that breastfeeding is not a violation of indecent exposure laws.  The law also specifies that an employer shall provide reasonable daily unpaid break periods, as required by the employee, so that the employee may express breast milk for her child.  These break periods shall run concurrently with any break periods that may already be provided to the employee.  Requires that an employer make reasonable efforts to provide a sanitary room or other location, other than a bathroom or toilet stall, where an employee can express her breast milk in privacy and security.  The location may include a childcare facility in close proximity to the employee's work location.

 

D.C. Law 22-179 (2018) requires the Deputy Mayor for Health and Human Services to expand and coordinate health care for infants and toddlers under age three, including increasing the utilization of breastfeeding among new mothers and strengthening the existing lactation support infrastructure.

Florida

Fla. Stat. § 383.015 (1993) allows a mother to breastfeed in any public or private location.


Fla. Stat. § 383.016 (1994) authorizes a facility lawfully providing maternity services or newborn infant care to use the designation "baby-friendly" on its promotional materials. The facility must be in compliance with at least eighty percent of the requirements developed by the Department of Health in accordance with UNICEF and World Health Organization baby-friendly hospital initiatives.


Fla. Stat. § 800 (1993), § 827.071 (2001) and Fla. Stat. § 847.0135 (2001) exclude breastfeeding from various sexual offenses, such as lewdness, indecent exposure and sexual conduct. 

Georgia

Ga. Code § 31-1-9 (1999) states that the breastfeeding of a baby is an important and basic act of nurture which should be encouraged in the interests of maternal and child health and allows a mother to breastfeed her baby in any location where the mother and baby are otherwise authorized to be.

 
Ga. Code § 34-1-6 (1999) allows employers to provide daily unpaid break time for a mother to express breast milk for her infant child. Employers are also required to make a reasonable effort to provide a private location, other than a toilet stall, in close proximity to the workplace for this activity. The employer is not required to provide break time if to do so would unduly disrupt the workplace operations.

Hawaii

Hawaii Rev. Stat. § 367-3 (1999) requires the Hawaii Civil Rights Commission to collect, assemble and publish data concerning instances of discrimination involving breastfeeding or expressing breast milk in the workplace. The law prohibits employers to forbid an employee from expressing breast milk during any meal period or other break period.


Hawaii Rev. Stat. § 378-2 (2000) provides that it is unlawful discriminatory practice for any employer or labor organization to refuse to hire or employ, bar or discharge from employment, withhold pay from, demote or penalize a lactating employee because an employee breastfeeds or expresses milk at the workplace.


Hawaii Rev. Stat. § 489.21 and § 489-22 (2000) provide that it is a discriminatory practice to deny, or attempt to deny, the full and equal enjoyment of the goods, services, facilities, privileges, advantages, and accommodation of a place of public accommodations to a woman because she is breastfeeding a child. The law allows a private cause of action for any person who is injured by a discriminatory practice under this act. 


House Concurrent Resolution 158 (2010) urges the Department of Human Services and the Department of Health to develop a program to encourage breastfeeding among mothers who receive assistance from Medicaid.

 

Hawaii Sess. Laws. Act. 249 (2013) requires specified employers to provide reasonable break time for an employee to express milk for a nursing child in a location, other than a bathroom, that is sanitary, shielded from view and free from intrusion. The law also requires employers to post notice of the application of this law in a conspicuous place accessible to employees.

Idaho

Idaho Code § 2-212 (2002) provides that a person who is not disqualified for jury service under § 2-209 may have jury service postponed by the court or the jury commissioner only upon a showing of undue hardship, extreme inconvenience, or public necessity, or upon a showing that the juror is a mother breastfeeding her child. 

 

Idaho Code § 18-4101 (2018) revises provisions relating to breastfeeding; provides an exemption from indecent exposure and obscenity for the breastfeeding of a child.

Illinois

Ill. Rev. Stat. ch. 720 § 5/11-9 (1995) clarifies that breastfeeding of infants is not an act of public indecency.

 

Ill. Rev. Stat. ch. 20 § 2310/442 (1997) allows the Department of Public Health to conduct an information campaign for the general public to promote breastfeeding of infants by their mothers. The law allows the department to include the information in a brochure for free distribution to the general public.

 

Ill. Rev. Stat. ch. 820 § 260 (2001) creates the Nursing Mothers in the Workplace Act.  Requires that employers provide reasonable unpaid break time each day to employees who need to express breast milk. The law also requires employers to make reasonable efforts to provide a room or other location, other than a toilet stall, where an employee can express her milk in privacy. IL HB 1595 (2018) prohibits employers from reducing an employee's compensation for time used to express milk or to nurse a baby.

 

Ill. Rev. Stat. ch. 740 § 137 (2004) creates the Right to Breastfeed Act.  The law provides that a mother may breastfeed her baby in any location, public or private, where the mother is otherwise authorized to be; a mother who breastfeeds in a place of worship shall follow the appropriate norms within that place of worship.

 

Ill. Rev. Stat. ch. 705 § 305/10.3 (2005) amends the Jury Act; provides that any mother nursing her child shall, upon her request, be excused from jury duty. 

 

Ill. Senate Resolution 170 (2011) recognizes the unique health, economic, and societal benefits that breastfeeding provides to babies, mothers, families and the community and resolves the state of Illinois to work to ensure that barriers to initiation and continuation of breastfeeding are removed and that a women's right to breastfeed is upheld.

 

Ill. House Resolution 778 (2012) urges departments that assist families and children to offer and promote educational materials about breastfeeding.

 

Ill. Laws, P.A. 97-713 (2012) establishes the hospital infant feeding act and requires that every hospital that provides birthing services to adopt an infant feeding policy that promotes breastfeeding. The hospital must routinely communicate this policy to staff and authorizes the posting of the policy on the hospital’s website. 

 

Ill. Laws Public Act 99-228 (2015) creates the Lactation Accommodation in Airports Act and requires that airport managers to provide a room or other location space at each airport terminal behind the airport security screening area for members of the public to express breast milk in private.

 

Ill. Rev. Stat. ch. 105 § 5/10-20.60, § 5/34-18.53 and 5/27A-5 (2017) require a public school, including a charter school, to provide reasonable accommodations to a lactating pupil on a school campus to express breast milk, breastfeed an infant child, or address other needs related to breastfeeding; provides for grievance procedures.

 

Ill. Rev. Stat. ch. 68 § 5/2-102 (2017) states that "reasonable accommodations" means reasonable modifications or adjustments to the job application process or work environment that enable an applicant or employee affected by pregnancy, childbirth, or medical or common conditions related to pregnancy or childbirth to be considered for the position the applicant desires or to perform the essential functions of that position. 


Ill. Rev. Stat. ch. 25 § 130/8A-21 (2018) directs the Architect of the Capitol to designate at least one mother’s lactation and wellness room in the State Capitol Building, the Howlett Building and the Stratton Building (HB 1042). 


Ill. Rev. Stat. ch. 55 § 5/5-1106 (2018) provides that on or before June 1, 2019, every facility that houses a circuit court room shall include at least one lactation room or area for members of the public to express breast milk in private that is located outside the confines of a restroom and includes, at minimum, a chair, a table, and an electrical outlet, as well as a sink with running water where possible (IL SB 3503). 


Ill. Rev. Stat. ch. 410 § 50/3.4 (2019) establishes a comprehensive list of a woman’s rights with regard to pregnancy and childbirth, including the right to information on breastfeeding (IL HB 2). 


Ill. Rev. Stat. ch. 730 § 5/5-5-3.1 (2019) amends the Unified Code of Corrections, expands the factors accorded weight in favor of withholding or minimizing a sentence of imprisonment to include whether the defendant is the parent of a child or infant whose well being will be negatively affected by the parent’s absence, including if the child is breastfeeding (HB 2444).


IL HB 3509 (2019) amends the State Employees Group Insurance Act, the Insurance Code, and the Public Aid Code, provides that donated breast milk must be prescribed by a licensed medical practitioner, provides that milk must be obtained from a human milk bank that meets quality guidelines establishes by the Human Milk Banking Association of North America or is licensed by the Department of Public Health, removes a requirement that the infant must be critically ill. 

 

IL HB 1438 (2019) regulates and taxes the sale of cannabis for adult use. Regarding the warning labels for adult use cannabis, there is a warning for pregnant and breastfeeding to not use cannabis. 

Indiana

Ind. Code § 16-35-6 (2003) allows a woman to breastfeed her child anywhere the law allows her to be. 


Ind. Code § 5-10-6-2 and § 22-2-14-2 (2008) provide that state and political subdivisions shall provide for reasonable paid breaks for an employee to express breast milk for her infant, make reasonable efforts to provide a room or other location, other than a toilet stall, where the employee can express breast milk in private and make reasonable efforts to provide for a refrigerator to keep breast milk that has been expressed.  The law also provides that employers with more than 25 employees must provide a private location, other than a toilet stall, where an employee can express the employee's breast milk in private and if possible to provide a refrigerator for storing breast milk that has been expressed. 

Iowa

Iowa Code § 607A.5 (1994) allows a woman to be excused from jury service if she submits written documentation verifying, to the court's satisfaction, that she is the mother of a breastfed child and is responsible for the daily care of the child.

 

Iowa Code § 135.30A (2006) a woman may breastfeed the woman's own child in any public place where the woman's presence is otherwise authorized.

Kansas

Kan. Stat. Ann. § 43-158 (2006) allows a mother breastfeeding her child to be excused from jury service and allows jury service to be postponed until the mother is no longer breastfeeding the child. 


Kan. Stat. Ann. § 65-1,248 (2006) provides that it is the public policy of Kansas that a mother's choice to breastfeed should be supported and encouraged to the greatest extent possible and that a mother may breastfeed in any place she has a right to be.

Kentucky

Ky. Rev. Stat. § 211-755 (2006) permits a mother to breastfeed her baby or express breast milk in any public or private location. Requires that breastfeeding may not be considered an act of public indecency, indecent exposure, sexual conduct, lewd touching or obscenity. Prohibits a municipality from enacting an ordinance that prohibits or restricts breastfeeding in a public or private place. 


Ky. Rev. Stat. § 29A.100 (2007) directs judges at all levels of the court to excuse women who are breastfeeding or expressing breast milk from jury service until the child is no longer nursing.


Ky. Rev. Stat. § 344.040 (2019) makes it unlawful for an employer to fail to make reasonable accommodations for an employee with limitations related to pregnancy, childbirth, or a related condition, including but not limited to the need to express breastmilk (SB 18). 

Louisiana

La. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 51.2247.1 (2001) prohibits discriminatory practices against states that a mother may breastfeed her baby in any location, public or private, where the mother is otherwise authorized to be. Breastfeeding shall not be deemed an obscenity or be a violation of any other provision of law. 


La. Rev. Stat. § 49:148.4.1 (2011) requires state-owned buildings to provide suitable accommodation for breastfeeding and lactation. 


La. Rev. Stat. § 47:305.67 (2011) provides that the state sales and use tax shall not apply to the consumer purchase of breastfeeding items, including breast pumps and accessories, replacement parts, storage bags and accessories, and nursing bras.


La. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 46.1407 (2013) prohibits any child-placing agency, maternity home or residential home from discriminating against breastfed babies.

 
La. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 17:81 (2013) requires public school boards to adopt a policy to require each school to provide an appropriate, private room, other than a restroom, that may be used by an employee to express breast milk. The school must also provide a reasonable amount of break time to accommodate an employee needing to express breast milk for up to one year following the birth of her child.


La. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 17:407 (2014) prohibits any child care facility from discriminating against breastfed babies. 

Maine

Me. Rev. Stat. Ann. tit. 5, § 4634 (2001) amends the Maine Human Rights Act to declare that a mother has the right to breastfeed her baby in any location, whether public or private, as long as she is otherwise authorized to be in that location. 


Me. Rev. Stat. Ann. tit. 26, § 604 (2009) requires an employer to provide adequate unpaid or paid break time to express breast milk for up to 3 years following childbirth. The employer must make reasonable efforts to provide a clean place, other than a bathroom, where an employee may express breast milk in privacy. The employer may not discriminate against an employee who chooses to express breast milk in the workplace.

 

ME HB 487 (2019) provides that it is unlawful employment discrimination for an employer to fail to provide a reasonable accommodation for an employee’s pregnancy-related condition, including lactation, unless provision of an accommodation would impose an undue hardship on the employer.

Maryland

Md. Tax-General Code Ann. §11-211 (2001) exempts the sale of tangible personal property that is manufactured for the purpose of initiating, supporting or sustaining breastfeeding from the sales and use tax.

 

Md. Health-General Code Ann. § 20-801 (2003) permits a woman to breastfeed her infant in any public or private place and prohibits anyone from restricting or limiting this right.

 

Md. Education Code Ann. § 9.5-404 (2014) relates to the licensing and operation of child care centers. The law requires child care centers to promote proper nutrition and developmentally appropriate practices by establishing training and policies promoting breastfeeding.

 

Md. State Personnel and Pensions Code Ann. § 2-310 (2018) requires the State, through its appropriate officers and employees, to provide a reasonable break time for employees to express breast milk and, on notice, to provide a certain place that may be used by an employee to express breast milk, prohibits the State from being required to compensate an employee receiving reasonable break time for any time spent expressing breast milk at work (HB 306).

Massachusetts

Mass. Gen. Laws Ann. ch. 111 § 221 (2008) allows a mother to breastfeed her child in any public place or establishment or place which is open to and accepts or solicits the patronage of the general public and where the mother and her child may otherwise lawfully be present.  The law also specifies that the act of a mother breastfeeding her child shall not be considered lewd, indecent, immoral or unlawful conduct and provides for a civil action by a mother subjected to a violation of this law.

 

Mass. Gen. Laws Ann. ch. 151B § 4 (2018) provides that it is unlawful discrimination for an employer to deny a reasonable accommodation for an employee’s pregnancy or any condition related to the employee’s pregnancy including, but not limited to, lactation or the need to express breast milk. (HB 3680).

Michigan

Mich. Comp. Laws § 41.181, § 67.1 and § 117.4i (1994) state that public nudity laws do not apply to a woman breastfeeding a child. HB 5313 (2017) specifies public nudity does not include a woman breastfeeding her baby whether or not the nipple or areola is exposed during or incidental to the feeding.

 

Mich. Comp. Laws § 600.1307a (2012) provides an exemption for nursing mothers from jury service for the period during which she is nursing her child. The mother is exempt upon making the request if she provides a letter from a physician, lactation consultant, or a certified nurse midwife verifying that she is a nursing mother.

 

Mich. Comp. Laws § 37.231 - § 37.232 (2014) prohibit discriminatory practices, policies, and customs in the exercise of the right to breastfeed and provides for enforcement of the right to breastfeed.

 

MI HB 5313 (2018) exempts breastfeeding women from public nudity laws.

Minnesota

Minn. Stat. Ann. § 145.894 (1990) directs the state commissioner of health to develop and implement a public education program promoting the provisions of the Maternal and Child Nutrition Act.  The education programs must include a campaign to promote breastfeeding.

 

Minn. Stat. § 145.905 (1998) provides that a mother may breastfeed in any location, public or private, where the mother and child are authorized to be, irrespective of whether the nipple of the mother's breast is uncovered during or incidental to the breastfeeding.

 

Minn. Stat. § 181.939 (1998) requires employers to provide daily, unpaid break time for a mother to express breast milk for her infant child. HB 2536 (2014) states that employers are also required to make a reasonable effort to provide a private location, other than a bathroom or toilet stall, in close proximity to the workplace that is shielded from view, free from intrusion and has an electrical outlet. The law specifies that an employer may not retaliate against an employee for asserting rights or remedies under this act.

 

Minn. Stat. Ann. § 617.23 (1998) specifies that breastfeeding does not constitute indecent exposure.

Mississippi

Miss. Code Ann. § 13-5-23 (2006) provides that breastfeeding mothers may be excused from serving as jurors.

 

Miss. Code Ann. § 17-25-7 - § 17-25-9 (2006) prohibits any ordinance restricting a woman's right to breastfeed and provides that a mother may breastfeed her child in any location she is otherwise authorized to be.

 

Miss. Code Ann. § 43-20-31 (2006) requires licensed child care facilities to provide breastfeeding mothers with a sanitary place that is not a toilet stall to breastfeed their children or express milk, to provide a refrigerator to store expressed milk, to train staff in the safe and proper storage and handling of human milk, and to display breastfeeding promotion information to the clients of the facility.

 

Miss. Code Ann. Ch. 1 § 71-1-55 (2006) prohibits against discrimination towards breastfeeding mothers who use lawful break time to express milk.

 

Miss. Code Ann. § 97-29-31 and § 97-35-7 (2006) specifies that a woman breastfeeding may not be considered an act of indecent exposure, disorderly conduct, or disturbance of the public space.

 

Miss. Code Ann. § 43-20-31 (2006) requires licensed child care facilities to provide a sanitary place that is not a toilet stall that has an electrical outlet, comfortable chair and nearby access to running water for mothers to breastfeed their children.

 

Miss. Code Ann. § 41-135-7 (2016) states the State Department of Health shall prepare a statement of rights regarding “Breast-Feeding in Mississippi: Guidelines.”

 

Miss. Code Ann. § 41-135-5 (2016) states hospitals that provide birth services may adopt n infant feeding policy that promotes and supports breastfeeding.

Missouri

Mo. Rev. Stat. § 191.915 (1999) requires hospitals and ambulatory surgical centers to provide new mothers with a breastfeeding consultation or information on breastfeeding, the benefits to the child and information on local breastfeeding support groups. The law requires physicians who provide obstetrical or gynecological consultation to inform patients about the postnatal benefits of breastfeeding. The law requires the Department of Health to provide and distribute written information on breastfeeding and the health benefits to the child.

 

Mo. Rev. Stat. § 191.918 (1999) allows a mother, with discretion, to breastfeed her child in any public or private location where the mother is otherwise authorized to be. HB 1320 (2014) added language stating that the act of a mother breastfeeding or expressing breast milk in a public or private location where the mother and child are otherwise authorized to be shall not constitute sexual conduct or sexual contact as defined in § 566.010, and is not considered an act of public indecency, indecent exposure, lewd touching or obscenity. A municipality may not enact an ordinance prohibiting or restricting a mother from breastfeeding or expressing breast milk in a public or private location.

 

Mo. Rev. Stat § 494.430 (2014) allows a nursing mother, upon her request, and with a completed written statement from her physician to the court certifying she is a nursing mother, to be excused from service as a petit or grand juror. 

Montana

Mont. Code Ann. § 50-19-501 (1999) states that the breastfeeding of a child in any location, public or private, where the mother otherwise has a right to be is legal and cannot be considered a nuisance, indecent exposure, sexual conduct, or obscenity.

 

Mont. Code Ann. § 39-2-215 et seq. (2007) specifies that employers must not discriminate against breastfeeding mothers and must encourage and accommodate breastfeeding.  Requires employers to provide daily unpaid break time for a mother to express breast milk for her infant child, if breaks are currently allowed, and facilities for storage of the expressed milk. Employers are also required to make a reasonable effort to provide a private location, other than a toilet stall, in close proximity to the work place for this activity.

 

Mont. Code Ann. § 3-15-313 (2009) specifies that the court may excuse a person from jury service upon finding that it would entail undue hardship for the person; an excuse may be granted if the prospective juror is a breastfeeding mother.

Nebraska

Neb. Rev. Stat. §25-1601-4 (2003) states that a nursing mother is excused from jury duty until she is no longer nursing her child and that she may ber required to file a qualification form supported by a certificate from her physician requesting exemption.

 

Neb. Rev. Stat. § 20-170 (2011) specifies that a mother may breastfeed her child in any public or private location where the mother is otherwise authorized to be. LB 427 (2017) requires schools to have a written policy related to accommodating breastfeeding students in schools with private, and hygienic spaces to express breast milk during the school day.

Nevada

Nev. Rev. Stat. § 201.210, and § 201.220 (1995) state that the breastfeeding of a child is not considered a violation of indecent exposure laws.

 

Nev. Rev. Stat. § 201.232 (1995) states that a mother may breastfeed her child in any location, private or public, where the mother is otherwise authorized to be.

New Hampshire

N.H. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 132:10-d (1999) state that breastfeeding does not constitute indecent exposure and that limiting or restricting a mother's right to breastfeed is discriminatory.

 

N.H. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 275-77 (2018) establishes an advisory council on lactation to consider the goals of the United States Surgeon General and the United States Breastfeeding Committee and to examine best practices in the State including specified programs already in place.

New Jersey

N.J. Rev. Stat. § 26:4B-4 (1997) entitles a mother to breastfeed her baby in any location of a place of public accommodation, resort or amusement wherein the mother is otherwise permitted. Failure to comply with the law may result in a fine.

 

N.J. Rev. Stat. § 10:5-12 (2018) makes it an unlawful employment practice to discriminate based on pregnancy or breastfeeding in compensation or financial terms of employment.

 

N.J. Rev. Stat §54:32B-1 (2018) exempts breast pumps, breast-pump repair and replacement parts, breast-pump collection and storage supplies and certain breast-pump kits from sales tax.

 

N.J. Rev. Stat. § 30:4-82.8 (2019) restricts the use of isolated confinement in correctional facilities, prohibits holding an inmate in isolated confinement based on several factors, including pregnant or breastfeeding status.

 

N.J. Rev. Stat. § 26:4C et. seq. (2019) requires certain public facilities and offices to provide an on site lactation room, requires the Department of Health to provide information about lactation room availability, requires the Department of Education to provide information on lactation policies in schools.

 

N.J. Rev. Stat. § 30:4D-6 (2019) requires Medicaid coverage for pasteurized donated human breast milk, under certain circumstances.

 

N.J. Rev. Stat. § 30:4D-6o (2019) requires health benefits and Medicaid coverage for breastfeeding support.

 

N.J. Rev. Stat. § 9:6-8.98.1 (2019) requires the Child Fatality and Near Fatality Review Board to study racial and ethnic disparities that contribute to infant mortality, addresses disparities in breastfeeding initiation and duration to increase supports among racial and ethnic populations.

New Mexico

N.M. Stat. Ann. § 28-20-1 (1999) permits a mother to breastfeed her child in any public or private location where she is otherwise authorized to be.

 

N.M. Stat. Ann. § 28-20-2 (2007) requires employers to provide a clean, private place, not a bathroom, for employees who are breastfeeding to pump.  Also requires that the employee be given breaks to express milk, but does not require that she be paid for this time.

 

NM SB 124 (2019) provides that correctional facilities housing female inmates develop and implement a breastfeeding and lactation policy based on current, accepted best practices.

 

NM SB 192 (2019) requires courts to consider pregnancy or lactation for release, bond or ood time computation.

New York

N.Y. Public Health Law § 2505 (1980) provides that the Maternal and Child Health commissioner has the power to adopt regulations and guidelines including, but not limited to donor standards, methods of collection, and standards for storage and distribution of human breast milk.

 

N.Y. Penal Law § 245.01 et seq. (1984) excludes breastfeeding of infants from exposure offenses.

 

N.Y. Civil Rights Law § 79-E (1994) permits a mother to breastfeed her child in any public or private location.

 

N.Y. Labor Law § 206-C (2007) states that employers must allow breastfeeding mothers reasonable, unpaid break times to express milk and make a reasonable attempt to provide a private location for her to do so.  Prohibits discrimination against breastfeeding mothers.

 

N.Y. Correction Law § 611 (2009) allows a mother of a nursing child to be accompanied by her child if she is committed to a correctional facility at the time she is breastfeeding. This law also permits a child born to a committed mother to return with the mother to the correctional facility. The child may remain with the mother until one year of age if the woman is physically capable of caring for the child.

 

N.Y. Public Health Law § 2505-A (2009) creates the Breastfeeding Mothers Bill of Rights and requires it to be posted in a public place in each maternal health care facility. The commissioner must also make the Breastfeeding Mothers Bill of Rights available on the health department's website so that health care facilities and providers may include such rights in a maternity information leaflet.

 

NY SB 2007 (2018) includes pasteurized donor human milk, which may include fortifiers as medically indicated for inpatient use, under standard coverage for medical assistance for needy persons under certain conditions.

 

NY AB 9508 (2018) requires that a covered public building shall contain a lactation room that is made available for use by a member of the public to breastfeed or express breast milk.

 

NY AB 748 (2019) amends the Judiciary Law, provides an exemption from jury duty for breastfeeding women, allows that such breastfeeding mother’s jury duty shall be postponed up to a certain period after the date on which such service otherwise to commence.

North Carolina

N.C. Gen. Stat. § 14-190.9 (1993) states that a woman is allowed to breastfeed in any public or private location, and that she is not in violation of indecent exposure laws.

North Dakota

N.D. Cent. Code § 12.1-20-12.1 (2009) exempts the act of a woman discreetly breastfeeding her child from indecent exposure laws.

 

N.D. Cent. Code § 23-12-16 (2009) allows a woman to breastfeed her child in any location, public or private, where the woman and child are otherwise authorized to be.

 

N.D. Cent. Code § 23-12-17 (2009) provides that an employer may use the designation “infant friendly” on its promotional materials if the employer adopts specified workplace breastfeeding policies, including scheduling breaks and permitting work patterns that provide time for expression of breast milk; providing a convenient, sanitary, safe and private location other than a restroom for expressing breast milk; and a refrigerator in the workplace for the temporary storage of breast milk. The law also directs to the state department of health to establish guidelines for employers concerning workplace breastfeeding and infant friendly designations.

Ohio

Ohio Rev. Code Ann. § 3781.55 (2005) provides that a mother is entitled to breastfeed her baby in any location of a place of public accommodation wherein the mother is otherwise permitted.

Oklahoma

Okla. Stat. tit. 38, § 28 (2004) exempts mothers who are breastfeeding a baby from jury duty, upon their request.

 

Okla. Stat. tit. 63, § 1-234 (2004) allow a mother to breastfeed her child in any location that she is authorized to be and exempts her from the crimes and punishments listed in the penal code of the state of Oklahoma.

 

Okla. Stat. tit. 40, § 435 (2006) requires that an employer provide reasonable unpaid break time each day to an employee who needs to breastfeed or express breast milk for her child.  The law requires the Department of Health to issue periodic reports on breastfeeding rates, complaints received and benefits reported by both working breastfeeding mothers and employers.

 

OK SB 285 (2020) relates to the accommodation for expressing milk and breast feeding; requires state agencies to allow paid break times for lactating employees to a use lactation room for certain purposes.

 

OK SB 1877 (2020) relates to public buildings; requires appropriate authority of a covered public building to ensure availability of a lactation room.

Oregon

Or. Rev. Stat. § 10.050 (1999) excuses a woman from acting as a juror if the woman is breastfeeding a child. A request from the woman must be made in writing.

 

Or. Rev. Stat. § 109.001 (1999) allows a woman to breastfeed in a public place.

 

Or. Rev. Stat. § 653.075, § 653.077 and § 653.256 (2007) allow women to have unpaid 30-minute breaks during each four-hour shift to breastfeed or pump. Allows certain exemptions for employers.

 

OR HB 2005 (2019) creates the Family and Medical Leave Insurance Program. Provides that benefits may be extended for an additional two weeks for covered individuals experiencing conditions related to pregnancy, including but not limited to lactation.

 

OR HB 2341 (2019) makes unlawful employment practice for employer to deny reasonable accommodation to known limitations related to pregnancy, childbirth or related medical condition, including lactation.

 

OR HB 2593 (2019) conforms state law related to expression of milk in the workplace to federal law, eliminates the exemption from providing rest periods for expression of milk in the workplace if granting rest period imposes undue hardship.

Pennsylvania

Act No. 28 of 2007 allows mothers to breastfeed in public without penalty. Breastfeeding may not be considered a nuisance, obscenity or indecent exposure under this law.

 

Pa. Cons. Stat. tit. 42 § 4503 (2015) allows breastfeeding women who request to be excused, to be exempt or excused from jury duty.

 

Act. No. 7 of 2020 enacts the Keystone Mothers’ Milk Bank Act; revises provisions regulating milk banks that provide donor human milk in this Commonwealth; expands licensee requirements; provides for the inspection of facilities and documentation; provides certain exemptions.

Puerto Rico

1 L.P.R.A. § 5165 (2003) declares August as "Breastfeeding Awareness Month" and the first week of August as "World Breastfeeding Week" in Puerto Rico.

 

34 L.P.R.A. § 1735h (2003) states that any woman breastfeeding her child under 24 months old and who presents a medical attestation to such fact is exempt from serving as a juror.

 

24 L.P.R.A. § 3518 (2004) states that a mother breastfeeding her child in any place, whether public or private, where she is otherwise authorized to be, shall not be deemed as indecent exposure, obscene act or other punishable action.

 

3 L.P.R.A. § 1466 and 29 L.P.R.A. § 478a et seq. provide that breastfeeding mothers have the opportunity to breastfeed their babies for half an hour within the full-time working day for a maximum duration of 12 months.

 

23 L.P.R.A. § 43-1 directs the Regulations and Permits Administration to adopt regulations, which shall provide that in shopping malls, airports, ports and public service government centers there shall be accessible areas designed for breastfeeding and diaper changing that are not bathrooms.

Rhode Island

R.I. Gen. Laws § 11-45-2 (1998) specifies that indecent exposure-disorderly conduct laws do not apply to breastfeeding in public.

 

R.I. Gen. Laws § 23-13.2-1 (2003) specifies that an employer may provide reasonable unpaid break time each day to an employee who needs to breastfeed or express breast milk for her infant child.  The law requires the department of health to issue periodic reports on breastfeeding rates, complaints received and benefits reported by both working breastfeeding mothers and employers, and provides definitions.

 

R.I. Gen. Laws § 23-13.5-1 and § 23-13.5-2 (2008)   allow a woman to feed her child by bottle or breast in any place open to the public and would allow her a private cause of action for denial of this right.

South Carolina

S.C. Code Ann. § 63-5-40 (2008) provides that a woman may breastfeed her child in any location where the mother is authorized to be and that the act of breastfeeding is not considered indecent exposure.

 

S.C. Code Ann. § 1-13-80 (2018) enacts the Pregnancy Accommodations Act, relates to definitions under the human affairs laws, revises the terms because of sex or on the basis of sex used in the context of equal treatment for women affected by pregnancy, childbirth or related medical conditions, relates to unlawful employment practices of an employer and lactation, provides for certain other unlawful employment practices in regard to failure to provide reasonable accommodations for an applicant for employment or employee (HB 3865).

 

SC HB 3200 (2020) enacts the Lactation Support Act; provides that employers shall provide employees with reasonable unpaid break time daily or shall permit employees to use paid break time or meal time to express breast milk; provides that employers shall make reasonable efforts to provide certain areas where employees may express breast milk; provides that employers may not discriminate against employees for choosing to express breast milk in the workplace.

South Dakota

S.D. Codified Laws Ann. § 22-24A-2 (2002) exempts mothers who are breastfeeding from indecency laws.

 

S.D. Codified Laws Ann. § 16-13-10.4 (2012) provides for an exemption from jury duty for a mother who is breastfeeding a baby younger than one year. A written notice requesting an exemption must be submitted to the clerk of court within ten days of receiving the summons for jury duty.

Tennessee

Tenn. Code Ann. § 50-1-305 (1999) requires employers to provide daily unpaid break time for a mother to express breast milk for her infant child. Employers are also required to make a reasonable effort to provide a private location, other than a toilet stall, in close proximity to the workplace for this activity.

 

Tenn. Code Ann. § 68-58-101 et seq. (2006) permit a mother to breastfeed in any location, public or private, that the mother is authorized to be, and prohibits local governments from criminalizing or restricting breastfeeding.  Specifies that the act of breastfeeding shall not be considered public indecency or nudity, obscene, or sexual conduct. SB 83 (2011) removed the age limitation in statute permitting mothers to publicly breastfeed only their children who are age 12 months or younger.

 

TN SB 2520 (2020) enacts the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act; sets forth fair employment practices and protections for pregnant workers.

Texas

Tex. Health Code Ann. § 165.002 (1995) authorizes a woman to breastfeed her child in any location.

 

Tex. Health Code Ann. § 165.003 (1995) provides for the use of a "mother-friendly" designation for businesses who have policies supporting worksite breastfeeding.

 

Tex. Health Code Ann. § 165.032 (1995) provides for a worksite breastfeeding demonstration project and requires the Department of Health to develop recommendations supporting worksite breastfeeding.

 

Tex. Health Code Ann. § 161.071 (2001) requires the Department of Health to establish minimum guidelines for the procurement, processing, distribution, or use of human milk by donor milk banks.

 

TX HB 475 (2019) includes infant nutrition and the importance of breastfeeding in a list of information to be disseminated to foster children that are pregnant and minors who are pregnant by the Department of Health.

 

TX HB 541 (2019) relates to the right to express breast milk, provides that a mother is entitled to breastfeed her baby or express breast milk in any location in which the mother’s presence is otherwise authorized to be.

U.S. Virgin Islands

14 V.I.C. § 1022 (2002) specifies that a woman breastfeeding a child in any public or private location where the woman's presence is otherwise authorized does not under any circumstance constitute obscene or indecent conduct.

Utah

Utah Code Ann. § 17-15-25 (1995) states that the county legislative body may not prohibit a woman’s breastfeeding in any location where she otherwise may rightfully be, regardless of whether the breast is uncovered during or incidental to the breastfeeding.

 

Utah Code Ann. § 76-9-702 and § 76-10-1229.5 (1995) state that a breastfeeding woman is not in violation of any lewdness, obscene or indecent exposure laws.

 

Utah HJR 4 (2012) encourages employers to recognize the benefits of breastfeeding and to provide unpaid break time and an appropriate space for employees who need to breastfeed or express their milk for their infant children.

 

Utah Code Ann. § 34-49-101 et. seq. (2015) requires a public employer to provide reasonable breaks for a mother who needs to express breast milk and a room or other location in close proximity to the employee’s work area that is not a bathroom, is private, and has an electrical outlet. The employer shall also provide access to a clean refrigerator or freezer for the storage of breast milk.

 

Utah Code Ann. § 78B-1-109 (2015) states that a court may excuse an individual from jury service upon showing the individual is a mother who is breastfeeding a child. The individual must make the showing by affidavit, sworn testimony, or other competent evidence.

 

Utah Code Ann. § 34A-5-106 (2016) states that it is a discriminatory and prohibited practice for an employer to refuse to provide reasonable accommodations for an employee related to pregnancy, childbirth, breastfeeding or related conditions if the employee requests it and unless the employer demonstrates the accommodation would create an undue hardship. An employer also may not require an employee to terminate employment or deny employment opportunities based on the need for an employer to make reasonable accommodations. 

 

UT HB 196 (2018) creates the Breastfeeding Protection Act, amends provisions related to public accommodations, prohibits discrimination based on pregnancy in places of public accommodation, permits a woman to breastfeed in any place of public accommodation.

Vermont

Vt. Stat. Ann. tit. 9, § 4502 (j) (2002) provides that a mother may breastfeed her child in any place of public accommodation in which the mother and child would otherwise have a legal right to be.

 

Vt. Stat. Ann. tit. 21, § 305 (2008) requires employers to provide reasonable time throughout the day for nursing mothers to express breast milk for three years after the birth of a child.  Also requires employers to make a reasonable accommodation to provide appropriate private space that is not a bathroom stall, and prohibits discrimination against an employee who exercises or attempts to exercise the rights provided under this act.

 

Vt. Acts, Act 203 (2008) directs the commissioner of health to convene a healthy worksites work group to identify priorities and develop recommendations to enhance collaborative learning and interactive sharing of best practices in worksite wellness and employee health management.  The work group shall examine best practices in Vermont and other states, including strategies to spread the adoption of workplace policies and practices that support breastfeeding for mothers.

Virginia

Va. Code Ann. § 18.2-387 (1994) exempts mothers engaged in breastfeeding from indecent exposure laws.

 

Va. HJR 145 (2002) encourages employers to recognize the benefits of breastfeeding and to provide unpaid break time and appropriate space for employees to breastfeed or express milk.

 

Va. Code § 2.2-3903 (2002) states that no employer with more than five but less than 15 employees shall discharge an employee on the basis of certain factors, including pregnancy, childbirth or related medical conditions, including lactation.

 

Va. Code § 2.2-1147.1 (2002) and § 32.1-370 (2015) guarantee a woman the right to breastfeed her child on in any place where the mother is lawfully present, including any location where she would otherwise be allowed on property that is owned, leased or controlled by the state.

 

Va. Code Ann. § 8.01-341.1 (2005) provides that a mother who is breastfeeding a child may be exempted from jury duty upon her request.

 

Va. Code § 22.1-79.6 (2014) Directs each local school board to adopt a policy to set aside, in each school in the school division, a non-restroom location that is shielded from the public view to be designated as an area in which any mother who is employed by the local school board or enrolled as a student may take breaks of reasonable length during the school day to express milk to feed her child until the child reaches the age of one.

 

VA SJR 298 (2019) designates August, in 2019 and in each succeeding year, as Breastfeeding Awareness Month in Virginia.

 

Va. Code Ann. § 2.2-1201 (2019) directs the Department of Human Resource Management to develop state personnel policies that provide break time for nursing mothers to express breast milk.

 

VA HB 827 (2020) relates to the Virginia Human Rights Act; prohibits discrimination on the basis of pregnancy, childbirth, or related medical conditions, including lactation; requires employers to make reasonable accommodation for the known limitations of a person related to pregnancy, childbirth, or related medical conditions, including lactation, if such accommodation is necessary; sets forth prohibited actions by employers; provides for actions against employers in violation of the Act.

 

VA SB 868 (2020) relates to prohibited discrimination on the basis of several factors, including lactation; relates to public accommodations, employment, credit, and housing; creates explicit causes of action for unlawful discrimination in public accommodations and employment in the Human Rights Act.

Washington

Wash. Rev. Code § 9A.88.010 (2001) states that the act of breastfeeding or expressing breast milk is not indecent exposure.

 

Wash. Rev. Code § 43.70.640 (2001) allows any employer, governmental and private, to use the designation of "infant-friendly" on its promotional materials if the employer has an approved workplace breastfeeding policy with certain requirements, including flexible work scheduling with breaks to express breast milk and a location other than a restroom for breastfeeding.

 

Wash. Rev. Code § 49.60.30(g) and § 49.60.215 (2009) provides that it is the right of a mother to breastfeed her child in any place of public resort, accommodations, assemblage or amusement and that it is an unfair practice for any person to discriminate against a mother breastfeeding her child in any such place.

 

Wash. Rev. Code § 74.09.475 (2017) requires all health care facilities that provide newborn delivery services to medical assistance clients to establish a strategy to promote maternal and child health outcomes, including elements to promote breastfeeding.

 

Wash. Rev. Code § 72.09.588 (2018) requires incarcerated women have access to midwifery or doula services, including breastfeeding assistance (HB 2016).

 

Wash. Rev. Code 43.10.005 (2019) revises provisions related to the expression of breast milk in the workplace, expands the definition of reasonable accommodation to provide reasonable break times for an employee to express breast milk for a certain number of years after a child’s birth and to provide a private location, other than a bathroom, for such purpose. (HB 1930)

West Virginia

W. Va Code § 61-8-9 (2007) states that it is not considered indecent exposure for a mother to breastfeed in any location, public or private.

 

W. Va Code § 16-1-19 (2014) provides that a mother may breastfeed a child in any location open to the public.

 

WV SB 1037 (2019) requires a safety insert for medical cannabis to include a warning to pregnant and breastfeeding women about the risks of using cannabis while pregnant or breastfeeding.

Wisconsin

Wis. Stat. § 944.17(3), § 944.20(2) and § 948.10(2)(b) (1995) provide that breastfeeding mothers are not in violation of criminal statutes of indecent or obscene exposure.

 

Wis. Stat. § 253.165 (2009) provides that a mother may breastfeed her child in any public or private location where the mother and child are otherwise authorized to be. The law specifies that in such a location, no person may prohibit a mother from breastfeeding her child, direct a mother to move to a different location to breastfeed her child, direct a mother to cover her child or breast while breastfeeding, or otherwise restrict a mother from breastfeeding her child.

Wyoming

Wyo. HJR 5 (2003) encourages breastfeeding and recognizes the importance of breastfeeding to maternal and child health. The resolution also commends employers, both in the public and private sectors, who provide accommodations for breastfeeding mothers.

 

Wyo. Stat. § 6-4-201 (2007) exempts breastfeeding mothers from public indecency laws and gives breastfeeding women the right to nurse anyplace that they otherwise have a right to be.

Sources: National Conference of State Legislatures and StateNet
Note: List may not be comprehensive, but is representative of existent state laws. NCSL appreciates additions and corrections.

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