Preventive Law for Employers
NJ Employment Law

NJ adds protections for breastfeeding mothers at work

New Jersey now has one of the most comprehensive laws in the nation protecting mothers who are breastfeeding or expressing milk. Breastfeeding was added to the list of protected characteristics under the New Jersey Law Against Discrimination, which applies not only to the workplace, but also to housing and public accommodations.  The amendments, which took effect  immediately upon signing by the Governor on January 8, 2018,  also require all employers to provide reasonable accommodation to breastfeeding employees, including breaks to express milk and a private place other than a toilet stall to do it. As with any  accommodation, if the employer can demonstrate that providing the accommodation would be an undue hardship on the business operations of the employer, then it is not reasonable.

The new NJ law provides more protections than federal law, which covers only hourly workers, applies only during the first year of the baby’s life, and is mandatory only for employers with 50 or more workers.   NJ covers all working mothers, no matter how big or small the employer, and does not contain a time limit.

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Ann Kiernan is an employment lawyer who has been practicing law in New Jersey for more than 30 years. She represents only employers and management and regularly provides management training companies big and small. Employment law is constantly changing, and Ann is familiar how these changes affect employers. To keep up-to-date and learn what issues are currently affecting businesses and employers in New Jersey, read the blog.

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