Q&A: What Are My Pumping Rights?

Is my boss required to let me pump at the office?
ByNancy Mohrbacher, IBCLC, FILCA
Lactation Specialist
Updated
Feb 2017
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If you work in certain states, like California, Colorado, Illinois, New York, and a few others…then yes, the law says that your boss is required to let you pump. He or she may also be required to provide you with a clean place (besides a bathroom stall) where you can pump in peace. To find out about the laws regarding breastfeeding and pumping in your state, check out the information on the La Leche League International website: LLLI.org. However, keep in mind that most states have no penalties for businesses that do not obey this law. Rather than threaten your boss with legal action or other extreme actions (like quitting), emphasize what the workplace has to gain by supporting breastfeeding. For details, go to WomensHealth.gov and read " The Business Case for Breastfeeding," newly created government materials that describe how worksite lactation support helps a company’s bottom line. You may find that you and your boss can implement change in company policies and maybe even set up a lactation room on-site.

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