Unraveling the PUMP Act: What It Means for Employers

What is the PUMP Act?

If you’re an employer, you may have heard about the 2022 PUMP Act and the accommodations employers have had to make for certain employees. But what is the PUMP Act, and does it affect your workplace? The Providing Urgent Maternal Protections (PUMP) for Nursing Mothers Act is an updated law from 2010 that provides protections for lactating employees.

ESS – Employer Support Services is here to provide more information about what the PUMP Act is, whether your workplace needs to comply, and if it complies with the new requirements.

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What is the PUMP Act: An In-Depth LookA group of women executives discussing what is the Pump Act and how to accommodate employees

The PUMP Act is a law that allows nursing mothers in the workplace reasonable break time to express milk in a private, non-bathroom space. This serves as an update to a 2010 law, Break Time for Nursing Mothers, with several changes.

Here is what the PUMP Act includes:

  • Substantially broadens its scope, extending the legal right to receive pumping breaks and private space to nearly 9 million more workers.
  • Allows employees to file a lawsuit against an employer that violates the PUMP Act.
  • Clarifies pumping time as time worked when calculating minimum wage and overtime. This applies if employees are not completely relieved from their work duties during their pumping break.

The PUMP Act was signed into law on December 29, 2022, and takes effect on June 27, 2023.

What is the PUMP Act: What Employers Need to Know

As an employer, what does the PUMP Act mean for you? How does this law affect your responsibilities and obligations to your employees?

Employers of all sizes must provide a reasonable amount of break time and a private space for lactating employees to express milk for up to one year after the birth of the employee’s child. This provision is in effect regardless of the employee’s gender.

The PUMP Act covers employers with fewer than 50 employees, who must also provide break time and space, but they may be excused from complying when it would cause significant difficulty or expense. The law ensures that nearly all workers are covered by these federal lactation break time and space requirements, with special rules applying to certain rail carriers and motorcoach employees.

So, what is the PUMP Act’s procedure if an employer does not comply? If an employer does not comply with the PUMP Act, employees can:

  • File a complaint with the U.S. Department of Labor Wage and Hour Division
  • Contact free helplines
  • File a lawsuit against the employer

Whether you need human resources management services to comply with PUMP Act requirements or other human resource laws and regulations, Employer Support Services is here to help. Our HR Manage solutions make it simple to focus on the core of your operations while avoiding legal troubles down the line. Contact us today at 225-634-3000 and speak with an HR specialist.

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A mom bottle feeding her child What is the PUMP Act: How Employers Can Accommodate Their Workers

The PUMP Act is easily understood in its documentation, but how will it play out in practice at your business? How can you, as an employer, ensure that you are fully accommodating your employees?

To start, provide a private room or space with a curtain or partition for your worker to pump. This space should be comfortable, clean, and easily accessible. Additionally, consider offering a hospital-grade pump at work for employees to use and amenities such as a mirror, sink, refrigerator, and microwave. The aim is to make it as easy and convenient as possible for your lactating workers.

Depending on the size of your workforce, you’ll need to have one space per 100 employees, two per 250, or six per 1,000 employees. It’s important to ensure ample space so a worker can access a lactation space when needed.

Enforce PUMP Act Requirements with Help from ESS

Also taking effect in June 2023 is the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act (PWFA). Many states also have similar laws expanding the PWFA and PUMP Act.

Contact ESS if your company needs help meeting PUMP Act requirements or setting up a payroll system that accounts for lactating workers. We are experienced HR professionals and can help your business comply with these new provisions. Contact us today at 225-364-3000 to assist your workers and ensure your business complies with PUMP Act requirements.

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