Texas Breastfeeding Coalition supports the following bills:
- House Bill 742 by Representative Farrar
Strengthening the Right to Breastfeed
Relating to the promotion of breastfeeding and the prohibition against interference with or restriction of the right to breastfeed; creates civil action.
HB 742 will educate business owners that the right to breastfeed exists under current law, will make it illegal to violate that right, and will give recourse when mothers face discrimination. This is the sixth filing by Rep. Farrar of this measure. In the 2013 and 2015 sessions, the bill was passed by the Business and Industry Committee and was set for the House calendar.
- House Bill 443 by Representative Walle
Right to Express Breastmilk in the Workplace
Relating to the places a public employer may provide for employees to express breast milk.
Chapter 619 affords Texas public employees who are new mothers returning to work the right to express breastmilk (pump) during the workday, translating into significant health benefits for children and mothers, and significant economic benefits for public employers. However, the law permits a restroom to be designated as a pumping space. Aerosolized fecal matter from toilet flushing makes this not just demoralizing but unhealthy. The Texas House of Representatives twice passed the bill without the Senate amendment that made a single-user bathroom an acceptable pumping space. Finding an area such as a little-used office or conference room, a supply closet, a curtained-off area, or a cubicle is not burdensome for employers. No new construction is required and a designated space need not be used exclusively for pumping. There is no justification for expecting mothers to prepare their infants’ meals on a toilet.
- Senate Bill 279 by Senator Zaffirini
Expression of Breastmilk in the Capitol and Other Public Buildings
Relating to the expression of breastmilk in the Capitol and other public buildings.
Like HB 443, SB 279 removes the language from Chapter 619 which allows for a single user restroom to be designated as a pumping space. Further, it sets the expectation that the Capitol will establish a pumping space, and requires that renovations or new buildings contracted or engaged in by public employers shall include a non-bathroom pumping location.
- House Bill 329 by Representative M. González
Relating to breastfeeding policies of state agencies.
HB 329 will require that state agencies, to the extent practicable, attain the Mother-Friendly Worksite designation created by Health and Safety Code §165.005. These agencies will develop policies to provide time and a place for mothers to express breastmilk and store it for later use by their babies.
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