Here in Texas, the legislature is considering a bill which, if passed, would allow public school teachers to take small breaks throughout the day to pump breast milk. Unfortunately, it’s being met by a lot of opposition (and most surprisingly, by women legislators, one who believes that if she could make it work, others can too).
Here’s the thing, though: while making small accommodations for breast-feeding mothers is a very basic ask, for working mothers of preterm infants, these small accommodations are supremely vital to the health and well-being of their child.
I can write pages and pages about how maternity leave, FMLA, and short-term disability are pretty effing lousy as benefits and public policy whenever they intersect with prematurity. But for now, let me just say this: pumping at work is not so much a hypothetical for preterm mothers as it is an actuality. Continue reading