Breastfeeding mothers shouldn’t face discrimination at work 

New mothers in New York have to make a lot of difficult decisions. Will they take extended maternity leave or go back to work as soon as possible? Choosing a source of nutrition for their baby can also be a tough decision. 

There is some evidence that indicates breastfed children have slightly better outcomes than those who consume formula, but breastfeeding is a big commitment that demands a lot from a woman’s body. If you choose to breastfeed your child, you will need to continue supplying them with milk for at least six months, possibly up to two years. 

New York has rules in place to protect you from discrimination when you go back to work after your maternity leave. 

You have the right to breastfeed or pump at work

Both federal law and New York state regulations give women the right to basic accommodations for breastfeeding. Whether you have someone bring your child to visit every few hours so you can nurse them in a quiet space or you use an empty office to pump milk and store it in the fridge, you will need to frequently express milk in order to keep your supply sufficient for your child. 

Your employer should accommodate you by offering you a private space in which to nurse or pump and also by allowing you to take necessary breaks to maintain the flow of breast milk and alleviate the physical discomfort of breasts engorged with milk. 

Some companies will refuse to accommodate women or punish them for asking for accommodations. Fighting back when your employer discriminates against you based on your sex, maternal status and recent pregnancy will not only protect you but also future mothers at your place of employment.

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