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Healthy Children – Breastfeeding

Feeding your infant provides more than just good nutrition. It also gives you a chance to hold your newborn close, cuddle him, and make eye contact. These are relaxing and enjoyable moments for you both, and they bring you closer together emotionally.

Breastfeeding is a wonderful gift for you as well as your baby. Many mothers feel fulfillment and joy from the physical and emotional communion they experience with their child while nursing. These feelings are augmented by the release of hormones such as prolactin, which produces a peaceful, nurturing sensation that allows you to relax and focus on your child, and oxytocin, which promotes a strong sense of love and attachment between the two of you. These pleasant feelings may be one of the reasons so many women who have breastfed their first child choose to breastfeed the children who follow.

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Workplace Support in Federal Law

What is the “Break Time for Nursing Mothers” law?

Effective March 23, 2010, this federal law requires employers to provide break time and a place for most hourly wage-earning and some salaried employees (nonexempt workers) to express breast milk at work. The law states that employers must provide a “reasonable” amount of time and that they must provide a private space other than a bathroom. They are required to provide this until the employee’s baby turns one year old.

This law is part of Section 4207 of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) of 2011. Download the text of Section 4207 only.

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Break Time for Nursing Mothers

United States Department of Labor

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (“Affordable Care Act”) amended section 7 of the Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”) to require employers to provide reasonable break time for an employee to express breast milk for her nursing child for one year after the child’s birth each time such employee has need to express the milk. Employers are also required to provide a place, other than a bathroom, that is shielded from view and free from intrusion from coworkers and the public, which may be used by an employee to express breast milk. The break time requirement became effective when the Affordable Care Act was signed into law on March 23, 2010. The Wage and Hour Fact Sheet #73 “Break Time for Nursing Mothers under the FLSA” and the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) posted below provide basic information about the law.

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