Public Policy and Legal Resources

Supporting breastfeeding through public policy. View and download the pdf here.

2018 Policy Achievements

AB 1976 – Employer, Lactation Accommodation (Limón): Existing law requires every employer to provide a reasonable amount of break time to accommodate an employee desiring to express breast milk for the employee’s infant child and requires an employer to make reasonable efforts to provide the employee with the use of a room or other location, other than a toilet stall, in close proximity to the employee’s work area for the employee to express milk in private. This bill involves language updates and would instead require an employer to make reasonable efforts to provide an employee with use of a room or other location, other than a bathroom, for these purposes. Status: Signed into law September 30, 2018.

AB 2785 – Student Services, Lactation Accommodations (Rubio): An act to add Section 66271.9 to the Education Code, relating to public post secondary education, this bill would require the California Community Colleges and the California State University to provide reasonable accommodations to a lactating student on respective campuses to express breast milk, breast-feed an infant child, or address other needs related to breast-feeding. Would require that these reasonable accommodations include, but are not limited to, access to a private and secure room, other than a restroom, to express breast milk or breastfeed an infant child, permission to bring onto a school campus any equipment used to express breast milk, and access to a power source for that equipment. Requires that upon the construction of a new campus of the California Community Colleges or the California State University, or the replacement, expansion, or renovation of an existing campus, the respective educational institution to provide a sink, in addition to the accommodations described above, in any room or other location designated to comply with these provisions. Would also require that a lactating student on a college or university campus be given a reasonable amount of time to accommodate the need to express breast milk or breastfeed an infant child, prohibit students from incurring an academic penalty as a result of their use of these reasonable accommodations. Authorizes a complaint of noncompliance with the requirements of the bill to be filed with the Office of the Chancellor of the California Community Colleges and the California State University, as applicable, in accordance with specified procedures, and, if the complaint is found to have merit, would require the respective chancellor to provide a remedy to the affected student. By imposing additional duties on community college districts, this bill would impose a state-mandated local program. Status: Signed into law September 30, 2018.

AB 2507 – Breastfeeding Support in Jails (Jones-Sawyer): Would require each county sheriff to develop and implement an infant and toddler breast milk feeding policy for lactating inmates detained in or sentenced to a county jail that is based on currently accepted best practices. The bill would require the policy to include provisions for, among other things, procedures for providing medically appropriate support and care related to the cessation of lactation or weaning and for conditioning an inmate’s participation in the program upon the inmate undergoing drug screening. The bill would require the policy to be posted in the jail, as specified, and to be communicated to all staff persons who interact with or oversee pregnant or lactating inmates. Status: Signed into law September 30, 2018.

2017 Policy Achievements

SB63 (Jackson) New Parent Leave Act Including Employees of Smaller Businesses which employ 20 or more individuals in the eligibility afforded by California’s PFL Program for 12 weeks of job-protected leave after the birth or adoption of a child. This would expand this benefit to a significant number of Californians who were previously ineligible simply because they worked for a small business. These protections help families make the adjustments required to build health and relationships before resuming work outside the home after the birth or adoption of a baby or child. Status: Signed into law October 12, 2017.

2016 Policy Achievements

BABES Act (Bottles and Breastfeeding Equipment Screening Act) Critical legislation for traveling families has been passed unanimously through both houses of Congress and is on its way to the President to be signed into law!  The bill would require the TSA to provide ongoing training to ensure its officers consistently enforce TSA Special Procedures related to breast milk, formula, and infant feeding equipment across all airport security checkpoints. Status: Signed into law by President Obama, Dec 16, 2016. 

AB 908 (Gomez) Paid Family Leave. Provides greater economic security and equity in California’s Paid Family Leave (PFL) and State Disability Insurance (SDI) programs by raising the current wage replacement rates to 60-70% on a sliding scale for both programs, extending PFL from six to eight weeks, and eliminating the current waiting period when applying for PFL benefits. Status: passed 4/11/16.

2015 Policy Achievements

AB 302 (Garcia) Pupil Services – lactation accommodations, respects and upholds the rights and educational opportunities of pregnant and parenting pupils, including providing lactation accommodations. Status: approved 10/2015.

2014 Policy Achievements

AB 1787 – Lactation Accommodations in Airports – This first-in-the nation law mandates appropriate space in airports for women to express breastmilk.

2013 Policy Achievements

 SB 402 (DeLeon) which requires California hospitals to achieve Baby-Friendly Designation or equivalent by 2025. Press Release

SB 252which allows CalWORKS participants who voluntarily participate in Maternal Child Home Visitation programs to satisfy their Welfare-to-Work requirements, as well as reinforces a women’s right to breastfeed publically in all County welfare offices.  Press Release

SB 770, which expands PFL covereage to include caring for grandparents, grandchildren, siblings, and parents-in-law. Press Release

2012 Policy Achievements

AB 2386 has been signed by Gov. Jerry Brown.  Breastfeeding is a Civil Right in California.

SB 502: Hospital Infant Feeding Protection Act – (De León & Pavley) requires all hospitals with perinatal units to have an infant feeding policy that promotes breastfeeding. This policy is to be based on the Baby-Friendly USA policy or the Department of Public Health’s Model Policies. Both policies encourage breastfeeding in hospital settings. The policy must be routinely communicated to staff working on a perinatal unit. Effective January 1, 2014.