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Washington Labor & Employment Wire » Breastfeeding Promotion Act of 2009 (H.R. 2819)

Breastfeeding Promotion Act of 2009 (H.R. 2819)

Core Provisions: The bill would amend several federal statutes to provide additional protections for breastfeeding.  First, the bill would amend Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 to protect breastfeeding women from being discriminated against in the workplace.  The bill would explicitly provide that “breastfeeding and expressing breast milk in the workplace are protected conduct.” Second, the bill would establish certain tax credits for employer expenses incurred to promote or support workplace breastfeeding, while simultaneously modifying the Internal Revenue Code definition of “medical care” to provide individuals with tax deductions for breastfeeding equipment and consultation services. Third, the bill would direct the Secretary of Health and Human Services to establish performance standards for breast pumps and identify those pumps that are appropriate for use on a regular basis in places of employment.  Finally, the bill would amend the Fair Labor Standards Act to provide that employers with 50 or more employees must provide breastfeeding mothers with adequate break time and privacy for breastfeeding needs. 

Status: Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-NY) introduced the bill on June 11, 2009, and it was referred to the House Committees on Education and Labor, Ways and Means, and Energy and Commerce that same day.