USBC News & Blogs
The fiscal year 2024 appropriations process is underway. Congress has taken many steps to advance the 12 appropriations bills that set the federal budget, however, there are a range of disagreements that are holding up the process. Follow the status of each of the spending bills in the Congressional Research Service Appropriations Status Table: FY2024.
Funded provisions in these bills can be found on the Federal Appropriations for Breastfeeding webpage. The webpage traces program funding levels at each step in the federal budget process.
The appropriations bills and associated reports also include a variety of unfunded or one-time directives:
* This blog was updated on September 15, to include August's #NewRights4Parents Times Square video billboard *
The mission of the U.S. Breastfeeding Committee is to drive collaborative efforts for policy and practices that create a landscape of breastfeeding support across the United States. We made a big step toward achieving our mission when the Providing Urgent Maternal Protections (PUMP) for Nursing Mothers Act and Pregnant Workers Fairness Act (PWFA) were signed into law.
While our work isn’t finished yet, it’s important that we take the time to commemorate these hard-won victories.
Thanks to the PUMP Act, an additional 9 million workers now have the federally protected right to reasonable break time and a private, non-bathroom space to pump during the workday, and all lactating workers have gained the right to file a lawsuit if their employer fails to comply with these simple, but impactful, accommodation requirements. And with the PWFA on their side, working parents have the right to reasonable accommodations for pregnancy, childbirth, and related medical conditions, including lactation.
These workplace protections are transforming the experience of new parents, who will face far fewer challenges than the generations before them as they can finally protect both their family’s health and their economic well-being. It took the hard work and dedication of hundreds of organizations and thousands of individuals to make this happen. Every story shared, every message sent to policymakers, every meeting with Senators and Representatives, and every news story made a difference. Thank you! Together we do great things!
Here are some of our celebrations from this year!
Celebrating the PUMP Act at the National Breastfeeding Conference & Convening
Senator Merkley, lead champion of the Providing Urgent Maternal Protections (PUMP) for Nursing Mothers Act, recorded a video message which was played at the opening of the 2023 National Breastfeeding Conference & Convening (NBCC). The message thanks and congratulates the field for their steadfast commitment and determination, which made the passage of the PUMP Act possible.
USBC Board Member, Tina Sherman, and USBC Staff Member, Cheryl Lebedevitch, led NBCC attendees in a joyous revelry of our collective win.
Three members of the PUMP Act Coalition hosted a PUMP Act exhibit, answering questions from attendees about these important new protections.
The PUMP Act/PWFA Victory Party Hosted by A Better Balance
Members of the USBC team joined the PUMP Act and Pregnant Workers Fairness Act victory party, attended by Representative Maloney, lead sponsor of the House version of the PUMP Act.
From left: Elizabeth Gedmark, A Better Balance Vice President; Sarah Brafman, A Better Balance National Policy Director; Tina Sherman, MomsRising Senior Campaign Director, Maternal Justice; Amelia Psmythe Seger, former U.S. Breastfeeding Committee Deputy Director; Cheryl Lebedevitch, USBC Senior Policy & Communications Manager.
The event was a beautiful and memorable celebration of this momentous achievement. "I was proud to have been able to bring my girls, Teagan and MaryAnna, to the celebration to show them what we can achieve together," said Cheryl Lebedevitch, USBC Senior Policy & Communications Manager.
White House Celebration of the PUMP Act/PWFA
USBC staff were honored to be invited to attend a celebration of the passage of the PUMP Act and Pregnant Workers Fairness Act hosted by the White House Gender Policy Council. The event featured an incredible panel moderated by Latifa Lyles, Special Assistant to the President on Gender Policy, featuring U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission Chair Charlotte Burrows, Jessica Looman, Principal Deputy Administrator of the DOL’s Wage & Hour Division, and two inspiring mom advocates: former USBC board member To-wen Tseng, and community advocate Lauren Porter.
To-wen and Lauren shared their powerful stories as working moms who desperately needed the protections which are now available under the PUMP Act and PWFA, and Administration officials shared information and resources on these historic laws.
From left: Latifa Lyles, Special Assistant to the President on Gender Policy; Charlotte Burrows, U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission Chair; Lauren Porter, A Better Balance Community Advocate; Jessica Looman, Principal Deputy Administrator of the DOL Wage & Hour Division; To-wen Tseng, former USBC Board member and MomsRising Member.
From left: To-wen Tseng, former USBC Board member and MomsRising Member; Nikia Sankofa, USBC Executive Director; Cheryl Lebedevitch, USBC Senior Policy & Communications Manager; Tina Sherman, MomsRising Senior Campaign Director, Maternal Justice; Jessica Lee, Center for WorkLife Law Senior Staff Attorney & Pregnant Scholar Initiative Director; Liz Morris, Center for WorkLife Law Deputy Director; Julia Parish, Legal Aid at Work Senior Staff Attorney.
The USBC Lights Up Times Square!
In the most visible celebration of National Breastfeeding Month in U.S. Breastfeeding Committee history, we are thrilled to share that we co-produced a video billboard advertisement that aired in New York City's Times Square during National Breastfeeding Month.
The celebration began with the Bumps & Pumps Pop-Up event in Times Square, coordinated by Momsrising. This public event featured a special address from former Representative Carolyn Maloney, a longtime champion for pregnant and breastfeeding workers. Created in partnership with A Better Balance, the American Civil Liberties Union, MomsRising, National WIC Association, and the Center for WorkLife Law, the ad, which ran on two billboards, celebrated the passage of the PUMP Act and the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act and included consumer-friendly information on these essential new rights for parents.
From left: Megan Simmons, Midwives college of Utah; The Honorable Carolyn Maloney; Dina Bakst, A Better Balance; Stacy Davis, National WIC Association; Tina Sherman, MomsRising; Jessica Lee, Center for WorkLife Law; Nikia Sankofa, U.S. Breastfeeding Committee; Louise Melling, American Civil Liberties Union; Cheryl Lebedevitch, U.S. Breastfeeding Committee.
It has been an incredible honor to celebrate these extraordinary and life-changing advancements in workplace protections in the United States. Thank you for fighting alongside us at every step of this journey.
You can become a champion for change today by making a sustaining donation in support of USBC’s continued advocacy efforts. Together we can shape improved breastfeeding experiences with fewer barriers for future generations while expanding access to human milk for babies nationwide.
The USBC would like to extend a note of deep gratitude to some of the organizations who were instrumental in achieving these important wins: MomsRising, Center for WorkLife Law, American Civil Liberties Union, A Better Balance, and the National WIC Association.
Greetings Esteemed United States Breastfeeding Committee Membership!
I hope that this special announcement finds you doing well.
It was great seeing you in June at the National Breastfeeding Conference and Convening. You are amazing in your support of the First Food field, and it was uplifting to have you, and all of that energy in person!
I write to share with you that there has been a shift in our USBC Board dynamics.
Paulina Erices has made the difficult decision to step down from her position as USBC Chair-Elect. Although we were saddened to hear this, we thank her for her board service and support and will miss her energy and input. We wish her well on the many wonderful things happening for her and her family!
In light of this news, the USBC Board is excited to announce that Tina Sherman, previously serving as an Elected Director, has been unanimously voted USBC Chair-Elect by the other members of the Board. We are also thrilled to announce that the Board voted to appoint Pauline Sakamoto as an Interim Board Member.
Learn more about USBC Board members on the U.S. Breastfeeding Board of Directors webpage.
I share this news for organizational transparency, but also to let you know that as you aspire to do more in USBC spaces, we see you. We need your voice, passion, and input.
I have also been encouraged to remind you that a Membership vote for our next USBC Board of Directors is soon to take place, so please look out for that email and cast your vote. To our candidates: thank you for considering board service and applying! For those looking for other opportunities to serve, please look into some of our committee spaces.
Thank you for being a valued Member of the United States Breastfeeding Committee.
Stay connected and encouraged in this most important work!
Tiana E. H. Pyles
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