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Breastfeeding workers’ rights in Indiana

On Behalf of | Aug 11, 2023 | Discrimination

Returning to work as a nursing mother is difficult because you miss your baby and need to pump breastmilk during working hours so your baby can eat and you can keep your milk supply up.  While women in the past didn’t have many rights when it came to this, you now have rights as a working mother who needs to pump for your baby. 

Indiana has laws specifically covering these rights. Learning about them while you’re pregnant may help you to prepare a plan for returning to the workplace while you still need to pump. 

What responsibilities do employers have?

Employers with at least 25 employees must provide breastfeeding employees with paid breaks to pump, according to Indiana Code § 22-2-14-2. Federal law provides applicable protections for the first year of your baby’s life. 

What are the requirements for the pumping area?

The area for pumping breastmilk must be private and clean. The spot can’t be in the bathroom. In addition to a space to pump breastmilk, employers must also provide a place to store expressed breastmilk. Your employer can opt to provide a space for breastmilk storage. If your employer doesn’t provide it, you must be allowed to provide your own portable storage to safely hold the breastmilk until it’s time for you to go home at the end of the day. 

Ultimately, Indiana’s laws provide essential protections for breastfeeding mothers returning to work. If your employer isn’t abiding by the law, you have the right to legal action. Learning your rights and having someone on your side who can help to enforce them are beneficial.