Private Breastfeeding Spaces Are Now Required at New York Airports
Traveling long distances with your child can be difficult, but finding a place to breastfeed shouldn’t be. On July 6, New York Governor Kathy Hochul signed new legislation into law mandating certain New York airports provide a private space for women to breastfeed behind the airport security screening area.
The law was passed in an effort to expand the state’s current public health law and ensure all parents have a safe place to feed baby. “One of the biggest challenges for new parents is finding a space to feed their children,” Hochul said in a statement. “This is a fight that many have had to deal with for many years, and only recently have they been able to secure the rights and accommodations that they deserve. By signing this into law, we will continue to make New York a better place to safely and securely raise young children.”
This policy change is the latest in a series of major actions taken by the New York government to support new parents. The state has previously written into law policies requiring lactation rooms in places of employment and public facilities.
A proponent of the legislation, State Senator Timothy M. Kennedy shared why he brought the bill forward in the statement. “This bill was created, as many bills are, after a conversation with a constituent of mine, who realized a gap in services for New York’s mothers. As a working mom who traveled often for her job, Rachel Jackson found little to no accommodations in airports for breastfeeding moms. We drafted this legislation collaboratively to change that…I thank Governor Hochul for signing this bill into law, ensuring that moms have options on the go—and that they don’t have to choose between their careers and raising a healthy baby."
Assemblymember Michaelle C. Solages adds that the legislation is not only an important step for traveling New Yorkers, but it will also ensure families receive the necessary accommodations even when traveling the world.
If you have travel plans on the horizon, check out The Bump’s 12 Step Guide to Flying With Toddlers.