NEW YORK (WWTI) – Governor Hochul recently signed legislation to expand accommodations in the workplace for breastfeeding.

Under current legislation, employers must give reasonable break times and make reasonable efforts to provide a space for employees to pump breast milk. The current standard falls below the requirements in place for government employees.

“Every nursing mother deserves access to a safe, hygienic, and convenient space to pump in the workplace,” Governor Hochul said. “By requiring employers to provide quality accommodations, this legislation will help employees feel comfortable and respected when breastfeeding.”

The new legislation requires employers in New York to ensure that pumping spaces are convenient, private and include seating, access to running water and electricity and working space. Hochul’s office said the legislation ensures that all employees across the state will receive the same accommodations that public employees currently receive.

“Nursing mothers deserve the same healthcare protections and accommodations, regardless of where they work. I am proud that Governor Hochul has signed S4844B, my bill to require employers to provide employees with access to private lactation rooms,” State Senator Alessandra Biaggi (D-NY) said. “No one should ever have to choose between providing for their child and their job, and we must continue to ensure that workplaces across New York are accessible and equitable for all.”

The legislation also requires employers to create and implement a written policy regarding employee rights for breastfeeding in the workplace. Employers must provide the written policy to each employee upon hire and annually thereafter, as well as to employees returning to work after the birth of a child, according toe the governor’s office.