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Breastfeeding Policy in the Workplace

The breastfeeding policy sets guidelines for supporting breastfeeding employees in the workplace. It details provisions for lactation breaks, the establishment of a lactation room, and the rights and responsibilities of breastfeeding employees. The policy aims to create a conducive environment for new mothers.

This Breastfeeding policy sample is ready to be tailored to your company’s needs and should be considered a starting point for setting up your employment policies.

This breastfeeding policy should include:

  1. Provisions for a dedicated lactation room, ensuring it’s separate from other common areas, equipped with necessary amenities, and maintained for cleanliness and privacy
  2. Clear guidelines on the duration and frequency of lactation breaks, along with compensation details during these breaks
  3. Procedures for booking the lactation room, recording break times, and addressing any grievances or complaints related to breastfeeding accommodations

breastfeeding policy

Breastfeeding in the workplace policy template

Policy brief & purpose

Our workplace breastfeeding policy refer to our provisions for breastfeeding employees. We recognize that breastfeeding has many benefits for new mothers and their children. Our company wants to support our employees whenever they need it.

Why do we have a workplace breastfeeding policy?

Our breastfeeding policy is part of our program for supporting mothers in completing their parental duties and bonding with their babies.

Scope

This policy applies to all new mothers in our company regardless of rank, status and position.

Policy elements

New mothers can pump/express milk or breastfeed their babies in the workplace. They can take reasonable unpaid breaks whenever there’s need. A general provision for these breaks is 15 minutes. But, employees are allowed to take as much additional time as they need.

For this purpose, we have also planned for a lactation room. This room will be:

  • Separate from bathrooms and meeting rooms
  • Shielded from view by the public and coworkers
  • Equipped with comfortable chairs, electric plugs, a table and a sink
  • Cleaned and sanitized regularly

The room will lock from the inside. The company can also install a fridge where employees can store their milk.

In general, we will be ready to take more steps to make breastfeeding mothers feel more comfortable. The HR department will accept and consider requests for improving the lactation room. For example, we can add music, pictures or other improvements upon request.

Unless the law provisions differ, lactation breaks are generally unpaid. If employees would like to receive their usual compensation, they can choose to extend their working time (daily or weekly) to cover time spent in the lactation room. To do this, they have to receive approval from their supervisor and HR. Another alternative is to use their Paid Time Off (PTO).

We should note that employees will be compensated as usual if they are summoned for an emergency or occupied with urgent job-related issues during their lactation breaks. However, we encourage employees to use these breaks as expected.

General rules

  • Employees can use this policy’s provisions for one year after their child’s birth.
  • Breastfeeding employees should not be disturbed with work issues when using the lactation room.
  • If employees use their paid breaks to pump/express milk, they will be compensated as usual. Employees can use their lunch breaks for this purpose too.
  • Employees should inform their supervisors when they want to use the lactation room to avoid confusion.
  • Supervisors aren’t allowed to prohibit employees to us break time for breastfeeding and pumping/expressing milk. Doing so could result in disciplinary action.
  • Employees should not take break time when it’s not needed or be consistently late to return. Doing so might violate our attendance policy.
  • Supervisors and the HR department are obliged to communicate this policy to employees.
  • At a time when infants are very young and breastfeeding is frequent, it’d be best for new mothers to use their maternity leave.
  • All employees should support new mothers. We will not tolerate comments, disturbance or victimization of our employees.

Procedure

To make sure that this policy works well, we require employees to record their lactation breaks. They can do this through a timekeeping system (if one exists) or through communication with their manager. In this case, both manager and employee are responsible for recording break times.

Also, to avoid confusion and tension between many employees who need to breastfeed, we will set up a system where employees can book the lactation room. In this case, employees can use the room for the determined time and no longer. Multiple employees can use the room simultaneously only after mutual consent.

Employees who have complaints about the process, the room or their coworkers’ behavior can use our grievance procedure to let us know. All legitimate complaints will be investigated and resolved.

Disclaimer: This policy template is meant to provide general guidelines and should be used as a reference. It may not take into account all relevant local, state or federal laws and is not a legal document. Neither the author nor Workable will assume any legal liability that may arise from the use of this policy.

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