A project of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office on Women's Health

Skip Navigation

Womens Health logo
En Español
Breastfeeding
divider line

Public Administration

Public administration organizations, especially city and state governments, include a wide variety of worksite settings. They employ field staff such as police officers, fire fighters, and emergency medical service personnel. They also employ many office staff responsible for managing city, county, and state business. Employees need private space, a challenge for those who work in cubicles or in field locations. The diversity of work settings requires a broad range of solutions for nursing women, including permanent spaces created in office or storage areas, as well as flexible options shared for other purposes, such as conference rooms, employee lounges, or break areas. Permanent space in multiple sites can be created if the need is high by installing curtains or partitions to create separate milk expression stations within a lactation room. Policies will ensure equal access to support in each setting. Some organizations also provide access for partners of male employees.

Feature Slides

  • Video: The large metropolitan city of Los Angeles implemented a top-down city-wide policy and support system to ensure that all nursing moms employed by the city receive equal access to support.

  • Video: A large public health system in Tarrant County supports both nursing mothers employed at the company and their family members.

  • City-wide policies supporting nursing mothers make it possible for employees to express milk in private areas established by the city or county.

  • A small claims court converted a storage area into a milk expression room.

  • Public administration employees working in cubicles will need a designated private space for milk expression.

  • The City of Louisville provides breast pumps for both female employees and partners of male employees.

  • Some emergency personnel use the back of an ambulance for expressing milk. Clear policies indicate that emergency response is always top priority.

  • A partition in an unused corner of a locker room provides privacy for nursing mothers to express milk.

  • In a small claims court, a vacant office area is used for milk expression.

  • At the small claims court, water for washing breast pump parts is available at a nearby restroom.

  • The city of Los Angeles makes multiple milk expression areas available throughout the city in all types of work settings. The employee ladies' lounge is one of the many areas available.

  • Office workers can consider having a caregiver bring the baby for feedings.

LEFT
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
  • 6
  • 7
  • 8
  • 9
  • 10
  • 11
  • 12
RIGHT

View All Slides


Space Solutions


  • Permanent space
    • Small office area
    • Wall added in existing space
    • Converted closet, storage area, or multipurpose area
    • Retrofitted area of a ladies' lounge
    • Enclosed area of unused space
    • Cubicle lactation area created with tall cubicle walls that provide privacy
  • Flexible space
    • Conference room
    • Employee's office
    • Office of a manager, supervisor, or colleague
    • Employee break area
    • Unused corner of a locker room or dressing room

Time Solutions


  • Employees use usual break and meal periods to express milk
  • Staff provide coverage as needed
  • Coverage may not be needed

Other Solutions


  • Employees in public safety or other field settings could be temporarily reassigned to indoor office jobs
  • Telework
  • Job sharing with another employee
  • On-site child care
  • Child care provider brings the baby to the employee for feedings
  • Employee goes home or to the child care provider to feed the baby
  • Employer arranges for the baby to remain with the employee at work (in safe and appropriate settings)
  • Employee stores her milk in a personal cooler or insulated lunch bag

Business Examples


Health Departments - City/Local

Health Departments - County

Health Departments - State

City/County Government

Federal Government


Content last updated August 04, 2014.

Resources last updated April 15, 2014.

printerPrint

Return to top