Recent Amendment Increases Rights of Nursing Mothers


Recent Amendment Increases Rights of Nursing Mothers

Sep 17, 2018

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Effective August 21, 2018, the Illinois legislature amended the Nursing Mothers in the Workplace Act (the “Act”) 820 ILCS 260/10 for the purpose of enhancing the rights of nursing mothers in the workplace.  The amendment now provides that employers shall provide “reasonable break time” (instead of “unpaid break time”) each time a nursing mother needs to express milk for a period of one year after the birth of a child. 

Additional amendment language provides that “[A]n employer may not reduce the employee’s compensation for time used for the purpose of expressing milk or nursing a baby.”  The Act was also amended to provide that an employee’s time to express milk “may,” as opposed to “must,” run concurrently with any break time already provided to the employee.  An employer must provide this “reasonable break time” unless doing so would create an “undue hardship.”

Reminder, this Act applies to employers with more than five employees. 

Any questions regarding implementation or interpretation of this Act can be addressed to any Robbins Schwartz labor and employment attorney.