Mothers have the right to breastfeed in any public or private place they’re allowed to be. Illinois is a breastfeeding-positive state with workplace laws that exceed the federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) by requiring employers with more than five employees to provide time and a space to pump. This coverage is extended to all employees (not just hourly).
We’ve awarded Illinois four drops on our scale.
IL Breastfeeding Laws: In Public
Mothers in Illinois have the right to breastfeed in public. Read the law: Ill. Rev. Stat. ch. 740 § 137 (2004)
Illinois Breastfeeding Laws: Airports
In 2016, Illinois passed the Lactation Accommodation in Airports Act that mandates that airports (with more than a million enplanements a year) provide accommodations for nursing mothers beyond security in every terminal. Read the law: Public Act 099-0228
Illinois Breastfeeding Laws: Courthouses
Effective June 1, 2019, all Illinois courthouses (or buildings that house circuit courts) must provide a private lactation space for nursing mothers. The law further stipulates that the lactation space cannot be a bathroom, and that it must include a chair, an outlet, and, when possible, a sink. Read the law: SB 3503/PA 100-0947
Illinois Breastfeeding Laws: For Students
All Illinois public and charter schools must support breastfeeding students by providing a time and a private pace to pump. Read the law: HB2369
Illinois Breastfeeding Laws: At Work
Illinois employers with more than five employees are required to support breastfeeding employees by providing reasonable break time, and a space (other than a bathroom) to pump at work. The law was amended in 2018 to remove the language of “unpaid break time.” Read the law: Ill. Rev. Stat. ch. 820 § 260
Illinois Breastfeeding Laws: Breastfeeding-Positive Municipalities
The windy city took the lead on supporting traveling mamas by passing a lactation accommodation law for all Chicago airports in 2015 (one year before Illinois passed the state law). All airports in the city must have a lactation space (other than a restroom) beyond security in every terminal. Read the law: Municipal Code Chapter 10-36. Section 10-36-345
Illinois Breastfeeding FYI
In Illinois, breastfeeding mothers are exempt from public indecency laws and can be exempt from jury duty upon request.
Mamava designs solutions to empower breastfeeding and pumping mamas on the go, like our freestanding lactation pods and lactation space locator app.
Now that you know the law, what next?
Note: Mamava’s goal is to provide the most up-to-date legislative information available. But federal, state, and municipal laws are constantly evolving—which is a good thing! So if we’ve missed something, we appreciate any additions or corrections. Contact us at [email protected]
Mamava Breastfeeding Laws key
State law protects breastfeeding in public (now true of all states). There are no state-level workplace breastfeeding laws. Breastfeeding mothers, who are paid hourly, are covered by the federal FLSA. Not the breast-case scenario.
State law provides workplace breastfeeding rights for specific employee sectors (e.g., city employees) OR mandates lactation accommodations for specific locations (e.g., airports, municipal buildings).
State law protects all working breastfeeding moms (not just hourly) and exceeds the federal FLSA law.
State law protects all working breastfeeding mothers AND additional state legislation protects specific populations OR mandates lactation accommodations for specific locations.
The gold standard. State law protects all working breastfeeding mothers, identifies standards for lactation spaces (e.g., access to a refrigerator), AND additional state legislation protects specific populations AND mandates lactation accommodations for specific locations.