Skip to content

    Health & Baby

    Font Size

    Legislative Help for Nursing Moms.

    By Eileen Garred
    WebMD Feature

    April 24, 2000 (New York) -- There is little legal protection currently available for women who wish to pump breast milk at work. Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney (D-N.Y.) has introduced a bill that would extend the Pregnancy Discrimination Act of 1978 -- which was meant to protect women from being fired or discriminated against for pregnancy-related conditions -- to cover breastfeeding and related activities to women on the job. "It's meant to ensure that a woman who needs to take lactation breaks while working can't be fired or harassed for it," says Maloney's spokeswoman Nicole Harburger.

    In addition to the Pregnancy Discrimination Act Amendment of 2000, Maloney has also filed two other lactation-related bills. One would amend the federal tax code to provide tax incentives to companies that set up lactation programs. The other bill sets minimum standards for the safety and effectiveness of breast pumps. All three bills are expected to be considered during the current legislative session and have "high prospects" of passing before the end of the year, says Harburger.

    Eileen Garred is a senior editor at Child magazine. She lives in New York City and has one daughter.

    Baby's First Year Newsletter

    Because every week matters, get expert advice and facts on what to expect in your baby's first year.

    Today on WebMD

    mother on phone holding baby
    When you should call 911.
    parents and baby
    Unexpected ways your life will change.
    baby acne
    What’s normal – and what’s not.
    baby asleep on moms shoulder
    Help your baby get the sleep he needs.

    mother holding baby at night
    mother with sick child
    Chinese mother breast feeding newborn baby girl
    Track Your Babys Vaccines
    Baby Napping 10 Dos And Donts
    Mother with her baby boy
    baby in crib
    baby gear slideshow