Progress for Working Moms: Breastfeeding Stations in Philippines Workplaces

The Filipino Department of Labor and Employment recently announced they’d like to install breastfeeding stations at more workplaces, according to an article from GMA News.

DOLE Secretary Rosalinda Baldoz discussed research showing how supporting breastfeeding not only makes financial sense for businesses, but also helps to boost employee morale. She discussed how she wants her department to take seriously the country’s Act 10028, the Expanded Breastfeeding Promotion Act.

The new lactation stations she’s seeking should include a restroom for pumping moms to use, refrigeration, electrical outlets for pumps, tables, and “comfortable” seats. The Philippines currently mandate 6 weeks of fully-paid maternity leave (8 weeks in the event of cesarean delivery), with options for employees to take additional leave unpaid. That’s 6 weeks more paid leave than we get Stateside!

A DOLE press release says Filipino nursing, working moms will have designated paid pumping breaks in addition to meal or other breaks.

Upon first glance, I thought the Philippines were going to be installing more pods like the New England airport lactation pods we wrote about a few months ago. Stateside, it seems like a few more Vermont businesses have adopted these pods–but how are US workplaces doing in general supporting working moms?

Most moms we’ve talked to who have office jobs can either close their office door for pumping privacy or have access to a clean place to go and pump. Women working other types of jobs seem to have more difficulty.

Has your employer provided a private, clean place to pump? Leave us a comment to let us know!

3 comments to Progress for Working Moms: Breastfeeding Stations in Philippines Workplaces

  • What are my legal rights for pumping at work? I go back to work in a couple of weeks and will be pumping (obviously) during working hours. I emailed my boss shortly after I gave birth about a place to pump and he was supposedly working on figuring something out. It sounds like (from another co-worker – my boss hasn’t even mentioned anything to me yet) that my option will be getting stuck into a file room that doesn’t even have an outlet (there is one outside the door which is where I will have to plug the pump in). I thought they were legally required to provide adequate pumping facilities and it hardly seems like a file room with no outlet is adequate. I’m really frustrated and upset with this. With my first, I was able to use an empty office but I have moved offices now and all of the offices have glass doors on them where I’m at now… I just feel like my job is basically giving me the finger and saying they don’t care. I’m almost willing to offer to pump in my car. I honestly think I’d be more comfortable with that. I know there was some legislation passed with Obama’s healthcare reform that dealt with breastfeeding and pumping at work, but what I’m not clear on is what companies are required to provide for pumping. Are they only required to provide a room that isn’t a bathroom or does it have to be a room actually suited to pumping (I’m not talking all out or anything, but an outlet, chair, small table…things like that). Any information would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!

  • Hi Alyssa, the breastfeeding and breastpumping laws vary by state. Here are some references for you:
    http://www.ncsl.org/research/health/breastfeeding-state-laws.aspx
    http://www.dol.gov/whd/nursingmothers/

    I would definitely recommend sitting down with your boss and discussing the options and you don’t get anywhere with your direct supervisor, then go to your HR department – they may be able to intervene and provide you with better support. Best of luck! ^Judy

  • Katy Rank Lev

    The tricky bit comes into play if you work for a small business. How many employees are in your company?

    Many times, employers want to work with working moms, so hopefully having a conversation with him will be productive. He might not even understand what all is involved in pumping. Can you phone in to see what the status is for a pumping place?

    Just as another idea: could you suggest hanging a curtain or asking your boss to frost the glass or similar on one of the office doors?

    Keep us posted and let us know if we can send along resources!

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