The college adheres to the New York state labor, Section 206-c, which protects the rights of nursing mothers in the workplace and prohibits discrimination against nursing mothers who decide to express milk during the work day.
The New York State Nursing Mothers in the Workplace Act requires employers to provide break time for nursing female employees to express breast milk for up to three years following the birth of a child. This law is consistent with the college's desire to provide an environment that recognizes and supports the work/life needs of our employees.
Employee’s Role: It is the employee’s responsibility to approach her supervisor and request an accommodation.
Supervisor’s Role: The supervisor is encouraged to rearrange work schedules to accommodate an employee’s request to express breast milk during the workday. Supervisors are to be flexible in accommodating an employee’s request at work. However, the law is not intended for employees to come in late and leave work early. If supervisors have a complicated situation or wish additional advice, they are encouraged to contact human resources.
Identify a suitable location for expressing breast milk at or within close proximity to the employee's work location.
The employee’s request to be afforded a “reasonable amount” of time to express breast milk at work must be accommodated. The employer may use paid or unpaid leave.
Since the law leaves undefined such term “reasonable amount,” the college has determined a reasonable amount of time for this purpose to be in the range of 20-30 minutes, two to three times per day. College policy allows Empire State College and Research Foundation employees up to three years following childbirth to utilize this benefit.
The deans at each center, excluding Saratoga Springs locations, are asked to email OHR with an identified space available for expressing breast milk at or within close proximity, to each center and unit.
New York State, Department of Labor, Section 206-CThe Nursing Mothers in the Workplace Act requires employers to provide a reasonable amount of unpaid break time each day to a nursing mother to express breast milk, or permit a nursing mother to use paid break time or meal time each day to express breast milk. This act was adopted to afford women the right to continue working, without being discriminated against, and not having to choose between work and providing breast milk for their children