Lactation Breaks

Dear HR Community,

We have a staff who recently returned from maternity leave and requires time during work to express breast milk.

The staff usually requires 2 x 20mins breaks in a day.

We are a childcare and it is not easy to find someone to cover for these breaks, even though they are only 20mins.

My question is how other organisations are managing this and if you have policies in place to help working mothers who are breastfeeding.

Thank you in advance for your replies and advice.





HR Poll: Do you provide lactation breaks for your working mothers who are breastfeeding?

Yes: 84.62%

No: 7.69%

Maybe: 3.85%

Not Sure: 3.85%




Her request is reasonable. You can check with her on the timing for her to lactate. Usually it is a 4h interval. If she pump milk before reaching office (e.g.. 8am reach office - her next break should be around 11am and the following is 3pm and 7pm.) Once the timing is establish, you see if you can arrange manpower to cover at these timings. If these timing is peak hour, you can check with her to see if she can lactate at 10am, 2pm and 6pm. cos if the interval is too long - she will feel very uncomfortable (it will feel very hard) and in the long run, her milk supply may drop as well. - May

Similar to nature call breaks we should support our employees in such situation. Try working out a class schedule that is able to accommodate to the express breast milk for example one teacher take over for the 20 minutes like storey telling session or nap time so that our friend able to ease her self.  - Avtar

Our company is quite flexi for this arrangement. We do not set any regulations as long as the staff did not misuse. - PY

Yes, we do not track the lactation breaks our staff requires, it could be up to 4 or 5 times a day - we just assist to cover as much as we can during the time she is away. - Serene

We do allow these breaks however in our case we do not need a staff to cover during these breaks so we are able to manage. - MK

Hi Gladys, I think this is quite common, though i understand the nature of the role may makes it more difficult. I think discussion with the employee and arrangement to be made with colleagues are important. i.e employee can go when the kids are having their naps or activities where the remaining teacher(s) can manage. - Sharon



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