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Accommodations for Breastfeeding Mothers in Missouri Schools

March 29, 2021
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WRITTEN BY Brittany Whitley, Eleni Bickell

The decision to initiate and continue breastfeeding often depends on several factors, including:
● whether or not the body produces a sufficient amount of breast milk
● general knowledge about the benefits of breastfeeding
● social support and cultural norms
● easy access to appropriate breastfeeding accommodations outside the home

In order to meet the health and privacy needs of breastfeeding employees and students, three primary accommodations are typically recommended for workplaces and schools- flexible milk expression breaks, a place to express milk, and a refrigerator to store the expressed milk. Few states (LA, NE, VA, CA) have statutory protections specifically for employees and students who need to express breast milk during the school day.

House Bill 254 and Senate Bill 76 would require Missouri’s public school districts to establish a written policy that outlines their accommodations for lactating employees and students and specify that the school employee/student is given a minimum of three opportunities (at two-hour intervals) to express breast milk or breastfeed.

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