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True or false: there is a statutory right to paid breastfeeding breaks for mothers with babies under 12 months old?

We can confirm that this statement is false!

In the UK, there is no statutory right to paid breastfeeding breaks, or a shorter working day, if a mother has a baby under 12 months and is breastfeeding (and so is likely to need to express her milk whilst at work).

In many other European countries breastfeeding mothers have a statutory right to paid breastfeeding breaks or a shorter working day if they have a baby under 12 months, but this is not the same here in the UK.

UK employers are legally obliged to provide pregnant workers and breastfeeding mothers with more frequent rest breaks, they just don’t have to be paid.

They must also provide suitable private facilities in which breastfeeding mothers can rest and /or express their milk.

It is worth bearing in mind that treating a woman less favourably because she is breastfeeding could result in a discrimination claim. Further, applying a provision, criterion, or practice (such as a blanket policy) that causes a disadvantage to a breastfeeding woman could also result in a claim for indirect discrimination. An employee can bring a discrimination claim whilst still employed and do not need two years’ service in order to do so.

In addition, the failure to grant a flexible working request could result in a claim. It may be indirect sex discrimination if an employer refuses a flexible working request from a breastfeeding mother if there are not good business reasons for the refusal, and if it results in the mother having to stop breastfeeding.

? Do you know what you must do, by law, to support breastfeeding mothers and pregnant workers?

? Have you got the relevant policies and procedures in place to ensure you are legally compliant and not discriminating against anyone?

? Are your policies flexible enough to allow your managers to agree meaningful support for new parents, based on their individual circumstances?

? Does your policy include management guidelines, to ensure your management team are confident in dealing with individual requests?

Get in touch to find out what you need to do, how you need to do it and how we can help you!

? 0161 478 3800

? Email hello@peachlaw.co.uk

True or false: there is a statutory right to paid breastfeeding breaks for mothers with babies under 12 months old?

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