KENTUCKY’S BREASTFEEDING LAWS
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Permits a mother to breastfeed her baby or express breastmilk in any public or private location. Requires that breastfeeding may not be considered an act of public indecency, indecent exposure, sexual conduct, lewd touching or obscenity. Prohibits a municipality from enacting an ordinance that prohibits or restricts breastfeeding in a public or private place. Prohibits individuals from interfering with a mother breastfeeding in any location.
Directs judges at all levels of the court to excuse women who are breastfeeding or expressing breast milk from jury service until the child is no longer nursing.
Section 4207 of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) amends the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) of 1938 (29 U.S. Code 207) to require an employer to provide reasonable break time for an hourly-waged (non-exempt) employee to express breast milk for her nursing child for one year after the child’s birth each time such employee has need to express milk. The employer is not required to compensate an employee receiving reasonable break time for any work time spent for such purpose. The employer must also provide a place, other than a bathroom, for the employee to express breast milk. If these requirements impose undue hardship, an employer that employs fewer than 50 employees is not subject to these requirements. The federal requirements shall not preempt a state law that provides greater protections to employees.
For more information:
- Fact Sheet on Break Time for Nursing Mothers under the FLSA, U.S. Department of Labor
- Break Time for Nursing Mothers, U.S. Department of Labor
- Frequently Asked Questions – Break Time for Nursing Mothers, U.S. Department of Labor
- Reasonable Break Time for Nursing Mothers: Request for Information from the public, Federal Register Notices, Vol. 75, No. 244, December 21, 2010
HEALTH INSURANCE COVERAGE
In addition, the ACA requires new private health insurance plans, including those available in the new health insurance marketplaces, to provide coverage for specified women’s preventive health services with no cost sharing (e.g., copayment, coinsurance, or deductible). Breastfeeding support, supplies and lactation counseling are one of these specified preventive services.
For more information:
- Preventive Services Covered Under the Affordable Care Act, NCSL webpage
- Women’s Preventive Services Guidelines, Health Services and Resources Administration, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
- Affordable Care Act Rules on Expanding Access to Preventive Services for Women, HHS.gov/HealthCare, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, August 2011
PREGNANCY DISCRIMINATION ACT
The Pregnancy Discrimination Act defines discrimination based on pregnancy, childbirth, or related medical conditions as a form of sex discrimination prohibited by Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. In July 2014, the Equal Employement Opportunity Commission issues guidance noting that ‘other medical conditions’ included lactation. Thus, employees who need to have time and space available to sustain lactation are no different from employees who need to have time and facilities accommodation for other medical conditions. The updated guidance related to lactation and breastfeeding can be found here.