Employers don't have to accomodate nursing mothers

Filed under: Your Pregnancy, Work Life, Media

This article made my blood boil.

It seems that breastfeeding may be turning into a two-class system in America. 50% of new Moms in the United States return to work within the first year of their babies lives - and not all are given opportunity to pump their breastmilk.

Federal law offers no protection to mothers who express milk on the job, so for many Moms in lower paid restaurant and service jobs, pumping becomes a challenging and arduous task. One woman was quoted in the article as saying that she often had to wait till others were finished multiple smoke breaks so that she could pump - and many times, there are no designated pumping areas.

I admit I know little about American corporate laws, but I have to admit that this floored me. Because of Canada's 52-week maternity leave policy, this issue doesn't impact us as forcefully, although I'm sure it's still a hot button on a smaller scale.

The article compares the accessibility of pumping for women in higher paid office jobs versus women in lower income brackets (in this case, Starbucks workers.)

What continually confounds me about America is the emphasis - at least in words - on family values and the children as the future, but seeming disregard for new parents and babies. I think at minimum, all companies should be required to provide a private area for new Moms to pump.

What do you think?

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AdviceMama Says:
Start by teaching him that it is safe to do so.