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Thread: Question about pumping conditions at work

  1. #1

    Default Question about pumping conditions at work

    I just returned from maternity leave and am working full-time. I am committed to breastfeeding and will need to pump at work.

    My question is regarding the condition of the "lactation room" provided by my company. Currently it is a shower stall in the company gym that has an electric plug hanging from the ceiling and an old chair. It does have a locking door. However, people still use this as a shower (the floor can be wet/not drain properly) and there is a bit of a bug problem in there (spiders, roaches) due to it being a damp, dark space.

    I spoke to our facilities manager who basically said that until our building lease is up (in 2010) there is nothing she can do. The only alternative she offered me was a storage closet.

    Just for the complete picture - my company has an office about 5 miles away that has a fantastic lactation room. It's a converted office with locking door, carpeting, comfortable chairs, refrigerator, etc. My company also brands itself as being very work/life friendly and promoting better health. I do not think if certain managers/senior leaders were made aware of these conditions they would approve.

    My question is: do you think I'm making a big deal out of nothing? Should I suck it up and pump in the bug-infested shower and/or storage closet? Do nursing mothers have rights to better facilities? (I'm in PA - I know there's no laws protecting working mothers who nurse) Should I contact the facilities manager again and tell her the options she offered aren't acceptable? Go higher up the ladder and risk pissing her off?


    Any advice?

  2. #2
    Join Date
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    Default Re: Question about pumping conditions at work

    I would pass that the shower stall as you described it!!! In that situation I would pump in my car. I did it everyday for over a year. Is that an option for you?

  3. #3

    Default Re: Question about pumping conditions at work

    I could use my car, but it is a very big parking lot (not very private). It would also take me away from my desk for a significantly longer period of time and cause me to miss more work.

    This building has over 400 employees. I just think the facilities should be better and encourage breastfeeding. I know of at least 1 mom who stopped pumping/BFing her daughter because she couldn't pump in that shower.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Question about pumping conditions at work

    I pumped in a closet for over a year, it had a plug an d an attached bathroom.

    In your situation I would press some but work together.
    does the closet lock? if not have her change the door knob out for one that does?
    is there an electrical outlet? if not accomadations could be made there very easily by having a wall outlet installed.
    also it is not too much to ask for a chair and small table to aid in pumping...

    another option is seems you may have is to work at the main office perhaps?
    Autumn
    Moma to *Silas* 10-30-07

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Question about pumping conditions at work

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*lidarln View Post
    I pumped in a closet for over a year, it had a plug an d an attached bathroom.

    In your situation I would press some but work together.
    does the closet lock? if not have her change the door knob out for one that does?
    is there an electrical outlet? if not accomadations could be made there very easily by having a wall outlet installed.
    also it is not too much to ask for a chair and small table to aid in pumping...

    another option is seems you may have is to work at the main office perhaps?

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Question about pumping conditions at work

    Is there not an empty office they can let you use?

    I agree that a buggy shower would be gross and I'd rather pump in the open in my car.

    Many businesses are not equipped to handle pumping women in comfort but this is obviously larger company. I would adopt the attitude that if they wanted me to spend more time working they would have more appealing accomodations rather than use the car. Have you looked at the storage closet to see if it will work?

  7. #7

    Default Re: Question about pumping conditions at work

    The closet does lock, but is being used to store a/v equipment and several people have the key. I suppose I could make a sign to avoid people walking in. It does not have a chair, any table/counter space, and I'm not sure if there's an outlet.

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Question about pumping conditions at work

    Is it large enough for a chair? Will they install an outlet? This is when the medela freestyle is awesome since it's battery operated. No free offices anywhere?

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Question about pumping conditions at work

    whether you use the car or the office I would use a hooter hider over everything. I have my own office but crap hapens and I'd rather avoid it! I used the hooter hider in the car with no issues

  10. #10

    Default Re: Question about pumping conditions at work

    A chair could squeeze in the closet.

    There are several free offices - but apparently this is not a suitable use for any of them. This is why I'm questioning whether to complain more or not - there are alternatives, but the facilities manager doesn't agree.

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