UK Lactation Guidelines

What You Need to Know: 

Recognizing the importance of breastfeeding for both mothers and their infants, and of promoting a family-friendly work and study environment, the University provides breastfeeding and lactation guidelines. In doing so, the University strives to create an exceptional academic environment conducive to working and learning and one that is attuned to both professional and personal needs of its women faculty, staff and students.

Policy

The University of Kentucky recognizes the importance and benefits of breastfeeding and is committed to promoting this effort. Therefore, in a manner consistent with Kentucky Revised Statute1, the University of Kentucky acknowledges that a woman may breastfeed her child in any place open to the public on campus. Additionally, the University shall provide sanitary and private space for expressing milk wherever possible; lactation breaks; education and consultative services; and resources to support its women faculty, staff and students.

Process

Upon returning to work after the birth of a child, nursing mothers may request an area to pump breast milk in the workplace during normal business hours. Typically moms need to express their milk two to three times during an 8-hour shift. Supervisors and Department Chairs will work with employees who are nursing to schedule reasonable and flexible break times each day for this activity.

  1. Lactation Breaks
    1. Whenever possible, the University shall provide flexibility for staff and faculty mothers who give their Department Chair or Supervisor adequate notice identifying a need for lactation support and facilities.
    2. Mothers are responsible for requesting lactation support prior to or during maternity leave, preferably no later than two weeks before returning to work.
    3. Employees shall use paid (15-minute) and unpaid (30 or 60 minute lunch breaks) to pump breast milk.
    4. Supervisors and employees shall work together to establish mutually convenient times for these breaks.
    5. Alternatively, flexible scheduling in accordance with the Flexible Work Arrangement Guidelines may be used to allot additional time during breaks for expressing milk. For nonexempt employee, this means compensating for the loss of each 15 minute period(s) missed with additional work time within the same week (make up time).
    6. Employees who need assistance are encouraged to make appropriate arrangements with their supervisor to ensure that normal business activities are not disrupted and their assigned tasks are completed as expected.
    7. Students and instructors planning to use lactation facilities must do so working around their scheduled class times. Although students should negotiate time needed for lactation purposes with individual professors, professors are not required to excuse tardiness or absences due to lactation needs.
    8. Note: This policy does not extend to permitting infants in the work place.
  2. Lactation Facilities
    1. The University, at a minimum, should provide private rooms with locked doors that are clean and comfortable. Each room should have an electrical outlet and one table and one chair.
    2. The University shall provide sanitary and private facilities in close proximity (10 minutes) to the work area across campus for mothers to express breast milk. Lactation sites shall be listed on the Work Life website.
    3. The location may be the place an employee normally works if there is adequate privacy, cleanliness, and is comfortable for the employee.
    4. Supervisors who receive a request for a lactation space should review available space in their department/unit and be prepared to provide appropriate nearby space and break times.
  3. Education Services and Resources
    1. The University shall provide lactation support and information on the Work Life website.
    2. The University shall provide reasonable access to consultative services to nursing mothers through UK HealthCare (faculty and staff) and University Health Service (students).