Illinois has enacted several significant breastfeeding laws:
(1) Clarifying that breastfeeding in not public indecency;
(2) Authorizing a public information campaign;
(3) Providing for a program in WIC for lactation support, including payment for equipment and services; and
(4) Accommodations for employed mothers who are breastfeeding.
On August 16, 2004, a law was enacted regarding a mother’s right to breastfeed in public.
Public Act 093-0942, SB 3211
Section 1. Short title. This Act may be cited as the Right to Breastfeed Act.
Section 5. Purpose. The General Assembly finds that breast milk offers better nutrition, immunity, and digestion, and may raise a baby’s IQ, and that breastfeeding offers other benefits such as improved mother-baby bonding, and its encouragement has been established as a major goal of this decade by the World Health Organization and the United Nations Children’s Fund. The General Assembly finds and declares that the Surgeon General of the United States recommends that babies be fed breastmilk, unless medically contraindicated, in order to attain an optimal healthy start.
Section 10. Breastfeeding Location. A mother may breastfeed her baby in any location, public or private, where the mother is otherwise authorized to be, irrespective of whether the nipple of the mother’s breast is uncovered during or incidental to the breastfeeding; however, a mother considering whether to breastfeed her baby in a place of worship shall comport her behavior with the norms appropriatein that place of worship.
Section 15. Private right of action. A woman who has been denied the right to breastfeed by the owner or manager of a public or private location, other than a private residence or place of worship, may bring an action to enjoin future denials of the right to breastfeed. If the woman prevails in her suit, she shall be awarded reasonable attorney’s fees and reasonable expenses of litigation.
720 ILCS 5/11-9,
Sec. 11-9. Public indecency. (a) Any person of the age of 17 years and upwards who performs any of the following acts in a public place commits a public indecency: …
(2) A lewd exposure of the body done with intent to arouse or to satisfy the sexual desire of the person. Breast-feeding of infants is not an act of public indecency.
20 ILCS 2310/2310-442
Permits the Department of Health to conduct a public campaign on breastfeeding. The Department may include the information in a brochure prepared under Section 55.64 or in a brochure that shares other information with the general public and is distributed free of charge. The information required under this Section may be distributed to the parents or legal custodians of each newborn upon discharge of the infant from a hospital or other health care facility.
20 ILCS 1305/10-25
Sec. 10-25. Women, Infants, and Children Nutrition Program.
(e) The Department may include a program of lactation support services as part of the benefits and services provided for pregnant and breast feeding participants in the women, infants and children nutrition program. The program may include payment for breast pumps, breast shields, or any supply deemed essential for the successful maintenance of lactation, as well as lactation specialists who are registered nurses, licensed dietitians, or persons who have successfully completed a lactation management training program.
820 ILCS 260/1 et seq.
Section 10. Break time for nursing mothers.
An employer shall provide reasonable unpaid break time each day to an employee who needs to express breast milk for her infant child. The break time must, if possible, run concurrently with any break time already provided to the employee. An employer is not required to provide break time under this Section if to do so would unduly disrupt the employer’s operations.
Section 15. Private place for nursing mothers.
An employer shall make reasonable efforts to provide a room or other location, in close proximity to the work area, other than a toilet stall, where an employee described in Section 10 can express her milk in privacy.
Illinois has enacted several significant breastfeeding laws: (1) clarifying that breastfeeding in not public indecency; (2) authorizing a public
information campaign; (3) providing for a program in WIC for lactation support, including payment for equipment and services; and (4) accommodations for employed mothers who are breastfeeding