A Better Balance applauds the introduction of the bipartisan PUMP (Providing Urgent Maternal Protections) for Nursing Mothers Act, which will increase critical protections for nursing parents, ensuring millions of workers have a clear right to pump breastmilk at work. The bill was introduced in the Senate on January 9 by Sen. Merkley, Sen. Murkowski, Sen. Duckworth, and Sen. Booker.
The PUMP Act will strengthen the 2010 Break Time for Nursing Mothers Law, extending the law’s protections to 9 million employees who are currently uncovered due to the law’s inclusion in the Fair Labor Standards Act, including nurses, teachers, and software engineers. The PUMP Act will also provide employers some additional clarity about employees who need to take breaks to express breastmilk for their babies.
“Too many nursing mothers are still being forced to choose between breastfeeding and earning a paycheck, oftentimes suffering negative health consequences as a result,” says A Better Balance Co-Founder and Co-President Dina Bakst. “Women who choose to breastfeed deserve the right to the time and space they need to do so, without risking their economic security.”
“Studies show that breastfeeding has many health benefits for women and their babies, and that supporting nursing employees has many benefits for employers, leading to lower costs and improved morale and productivity—it’s a win-win,” Bakst added. “We look forward to continuing to work with lawmakers to pass the PUMP Act.”