FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 20, 2008
CA Labor Commissioner cites company for not providing lactation accommodation to employee
Santa Clara—June 19, 2008—California Labor Commissioner Angela Bradstreet today announced the issuance of a citation to a Santa Clara-based International Security Services, Inc. for failing to provide private accommodations for an employee to express breast milk for her newborn. The citation is the first of its kind since the law took effect in 2002. A fine of $4,000 has been assessed.
“Under the law, employers are obligated to accommodate employees who wish to provide breast milk for their infant children,” Bradstreet said. “This employer failed to provide a reasonable amount of break time and a private room for an employee to express milk for her baby as required.”
The labor commissioner received a complaint -- the first lodged as a result of the 2002 legislation -- from the employee on March 4, which prompted an investigation. The investigation revealed that the employee was not provided an appropriate, designated room. Initially the room that was provided was computer server room with security cameras. This offered an inadequate level of privacy needed to perform the milk expressing process.
Labor Code sections 1030-1033 became law in 2001 and mandates every employer, regardless of size, to provide a reasonable amount of time to accommodate expressing of breast milk and to make reasonable efforts to provide the employee with the use of a room or other location, other than a bathroom, in close proximity to the employees work area to express milk in private.
Bradstreet urged women who are not being provided appropriate accommodations for milk expressing to contact her office and file a complaint.
“This is not the type of law that we can address with enforcement sweeps and filing a complaint is important so that we can correct the violation and educate the employer,” added Bradstreet.
The DLSE adjudicates wage claims, investigates discrimination and public works complaints, and enforces state labor law and Industrial Welfare Commission wage orders. To learn more about the functions of the California Labor Commissioner, visit our web site at www.dir.ca.gov/dlse.
Employees that have work-related questions or complaints can call the California Workers’ Information Hotline at 1-866-924-9757.
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NOTE: International Security Services, Inc. cooperated with DLSE in resolving the citation referenced in this press release informally. In the process of doing so, International Security Services, Inc. has promulgated and disseminated internal company policies that comply with the requirements of the Labor Code regarding lactation accommodation.