Nursing mothers would benefit from Daley bill regarding breast milk collection in workplace (with video)

HARRISBURG, May 11 – As part of a comprehensive package aimed at improving women’s health, state Rep. Mary Jo Daley, D-Montgomery, today said she introduced a bill requiring employers to provide private, sanitary space for nursing mothers to pump breast milk.

Daley said H.B. 1100, part of the Pennsylvania Agenda for Women’s Health and co-sponsored by state Rep. David Parker, R-Monroe, would add the commonwealth to approximately two dozen states that have laws requiring workplace accommodations for nursing women.

Daley said current federal law requires employers to provide a private, sanitary space for female employees to pump milk – but only for up to one year after the birth of a child. She also said the federal law inexplicably does not apply to salaried employees.

“Our legislation would fix two main loopholes in federal law,” Daley said. “First, it would apply to all employees, including those who are exempt from federal overtime provisions, such as salaried or management employees. Second, this bill would require employers to provide a private, sanitary space for mothers to pump milk beyond one year after birth.

“I am delighted to work with my colleague Representative David Parker on this important legislation.”

Daley noted this legislation would mirror federal law by exempting small employers from these requirements if they would present an undue hardship to the employer. She said an added economic benefit is that breastfeeding mothers miss fewer days from work because their infants are sick less often.

Daley said she discusses her views on workplace accommodations for nursing mothers in a blog for Maternity Care Coalition in Philadelphia. You can read her responses here.