The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) requires that businesses and employers provide nursing mothers with certain accommodations in the workplace. The Act applies to all qualified Texas employees, and if their employers do not offer these benefits, the employer may be liable.
Section 7 of the FLSA (the “Act”) requires employers to provide employees with time and resources to breastfeed in the workplace. The Act mandates employers to provide their employees with a “reasonable break time” to express breast milk for their nursing child for up to one year after the child’s birth. Often, these breaks are referred to as “pumping breaks.”
The amount of time the employer is required to provide must be reasonable, but this will vary as to the frequency and number of times needed. Employers have several options on how to allow their employees this reasonable time. Some have periods of downtime, and they may ask their employees to use that time to express milk. In certain instances, employers allow employees to split shifts to enable employees to leave and express milk. If an employer has a formal policy for nursing mothers, they must adhere to these policies and procedures.
In addition to providing their employees with a reasonable time to pump, employers must also provide employees with a private space to express breast milk. Employers may not use a bathroom to fulfill this requirement. Employers may try to evade this responsibility by arguing they don’t the necessary space. However, the area does not need to be a dedicated lactation room, and it does not need to be permanent. There are many ways employers can meet this requirement.
Providing mothers with this support is beneficial to babies, mothers, and employers. Texas employees should contact their human resources department or supervisor if their employer refuses to provide the required supports. If their employer refuses to comport with the FLSA, the employee should contact a qualified Texas employment attorney.
Are You Facing Difficulties As a Nursing Mother in the Workplace?
Texas employers have a responsibility to support nursing mothers in the workplace. If your employer denies you your rights as a nursing mother, you should contact our team of attorneys at Rob Wiley P.C. We have extensive experience handling all types of employment-related claims in Dallas and throughout Texas. To learn more, contact us at 214-528-6500 for a consultation. You can also contact us online.