Lactation Accommodation Policy

Effective Date January 1, 2018
Last Updated June 12, 2023
Responsible University Officer Donna Davis, General Counsel
Policy Owner Diane Nelson, Associate Vice President, Human Resources
Policy Contacts

Jill Bouchard, Leave Manager

Policy Statement

The University of San Francisco recognizes that breast milk is the optimal food for growth and development of infants. This policy is to establish guidelines for promoting a breastfeeding-friendly work environment and supporting lactating employees at the University for as long as they desire to express breast milk. The University supports the legal right and necessity of employees who choose to express milk in the workplace. 

Reason for Policy

The goals of this Policy include:

  • To establish guidelines promoting a work environment that supports breastfeeding at the University.
  • To establish that employees have a right to request lactation accommodation.
  • To establish USF's obligation to respond to lactation requests and to provide a written response to the employee if USF cannot provide break time or a compliant location. Any such denials must first be approved by USF's Leave Manager.
  • To establish the employee's right to file a complaint with the Labor Commissioner for any related violation.
  • To comply with San Francisco’s Lactation in the Workplace Ordinance, CA SB 142, and the Federal PUMP for Nursing Mothers Act.

Who Should Read this Policy

Members of the Leadership Team; employees inquiring about parental leave, all supervisors and Business Managers, and all new employees.

Policy Text

In accordance with San Francisco’s Lactation in the Workplace Ordinance, CA SB 142, and the Federal PUMP for Nursing Mothers Act, breastfeeding employees will be provided breaks to express milk during working hours in a lactation space that meets minimum stipulated requirements described below. The break time shall, if possible, run concurrently with the employee’s lunch and break time. If the time for an employee’s break time does not run concurrently or when additional time is necessary, the break time may be unpaid. The employee's travel time to and from the lactation location is not considered part of the break time.

Lactation Space Requirements

The University of San Francisco will provide breastfeeding employees with space in close proximity to their work area that is shielded from view and free from intrusion from colleagues and the public, to express breast milk. The room or location may include the place where the employee normally works if it otherwise meets the requirements of the lactation space.

The lactation space will:

  • Not be a restroom
  • Be safe, clean, and free of toxic or hazardous materials
  • Contain a place to sit, a surface to place a breast pump, and personal items
  • Have access to electricity 
  • Have access to a sink with running water and a refrigerator in close proximity to the employee’s work area
  • Potentially be a multi-purpose room if they satisfy the requirements for space; however, use of the room for lactation takes priority over other uses  


Lactation Accommodation Requests

Breastfeeding employees who wish to express milk during working hours must submit a  Lactation Accommodation Request Form at least (5) business days in advance before the start of the request.  The form is electronically routed to their supervisor for acknowledgement and then routed to for processing.  Once received by Human Resources, the employee and supervisor will receive written confirmation of the approved schedule and room location. 

Employer Records

The University will maintain a record of the written requests for lactation accommodations that include the name of the employee, the date of the request, and a description of how the University resolved the request. If an employer denies a request for Lactation Accommodation, it must save the written denial. All of these records must be maintained for three years from the date of the request.


San Francisco Lactation in the Workplace Ordinance, CA SB 142, and the Federal PUMP for Nursing Mothers Act expressly prohibit retaliation against lactating employees for exercising their rights. This includes those who request time to express breast milk at work and/or who lodge a complaint related to the right to lactation accommodations. To file a discrimination complaint, email or submit an anonymous complaint via the Whistleblower Hotline.

Related Information

Type Name and Location
External San Francisco’s Office of Labor Standards Enforcement
External CA Labor Commissioner
External PUMP for Nursing Mothers Act


Name and Location Use
Lactation Accommodation Request Form For breastfeeding employees who wish to express milk during working hours