Companies have already been found guilty of violating the new breastfeeding break rule implemented by the healthcare reform bill and have started receiving citations.

The Department of Labor (DOL) says 23 companies have been cited for violating the new rule.

Some of the well-known companies that’ve been cited, according to an MSNBC report:

  • Dollar General
  • Dillard’s
  • Starbucks, and
  • McDonald’s.

The healthcare reform law amended the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), creating a rule that requires all employers covered by the FLSA with more than 50 workers to provide breaks and a private room (other than a bathroom) for nursing mothers to express breast milk to take home for their child.

Employers with 49 or fewer employees are exempt from this rule if it would “impose an undue hardship by causing the employer significant difficulty or expense.”

The reasoning behind the rule is simple: Research has shown breastfed babies tend to have fewer health problems than formula-fed babies — and thus require less medical care. The theory is that by encouraging breastfeeding, employers may reduce the strain on the healthcare system and help lower costs.

There are other benefits for employers, too. Example: Businesses with progressive lactation policies tend to place higher in employee job satisfaction rankings.

Info: The DOL’s Fact Sheet on the rule can be found here.


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