Fewer Than 1 in 5 Working Moms Who Breastfeed Know Their Rights in the Workplace, According to a Survey Sponsored by Byram Healthcare
The Majority Cited the Ability to Return to Work as a Benefit of the Breast Pump, but They are Not Always Welcomed with Open Arms
WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. (July 31, 2019) – Byram Healthcare Centers, Inc., a leading durable medical equipment (DME) provider that is part of the Owens & Minor family, today announced the results of a survey revealing that fewer than 1 in 5 working moms (18%) who breastfeed know all the protections afforded to them in the workplace. Commissioned by Byram Healthcare and conducted by Wakefield Research, the survey polled 1,000 working mothers in the U.S. with children ages two and under who are breastfeeding or recently breastfed. It is the first to ask working moms how critical breastfeeding equipment and support are to their work lives.
According to the survey, a vast majority (95%) of working moms who breastfeed have used a breast pump. Respondents shared the benefits pumps have offered them, especially around the ability to shape their lives. The majority (63%) said breast pumps enabled their return to the workforce and more than 1 in 3 (36%) reported that it gave them a chance to continue advancing their career.
While pumping empowers working moms, not knowing their breastfeeding rights means they can't ask for the support they need. More than half (52%) do not know that they are legally entitled to a room to pump or express milk for a full year after giving birth. They are also not aware this room needs to have shades or no windows (54%) and have a lock (42%). Other rights include access to running water and access to a refrigerator to store milk. Shockingly, 11% of working moms mistakenly believe they are entitled to none of these protections.
“The results of this survey show us just how critical access to breastfeeding equipment and support are for moms who plan to return to work,” said Judy Manning, vice president of marketing at Byram Healthcare. “Protecting the legal rights of breastfeeding women not only shows them they are welcomed with open arms, but it levels the playing field.”
Supporting New Moms in the Workplace
More than half (53%) of respondents said they had their hours cut or workload altered because they were new moms, even though they didn’t ask for or want it. Additionally, those who reported having their workload altered are more likely to have experienced a frustration or embarrassment while pumping/breastfeeding during work – such as someone walking in on them, making a rude comment or asking them to pump at a different time or place – than moms who never had their hours cut without wanting it (83% vs. 48%).
However, the survey also revealed that taking pumping breaks does not mean pumping the brakes at work. Nearly all (96%) of working moms say they multitask as they pump:
- 62% have eaten lunch
- 55% have checked work emails
- 52% conducted a phone or conference call
- 49% made a to-do list
Byram Healthcare announced that it published a toolkit, “A Working Mom’s Guide to Breastfeeding” as a resource for new moms headed back to work. The toolkit was created with Shari Criso, an RN, certified nurse midwife, International Board Certified Lactation Consultant and nationally recognized parenting educator.
“I’m excited to give moms the tools they need to get up to speed on their rights and to advocate for themselves in the workplace,” said Shari Criso. “It’s a great resource to help all breastfeeding moms learn their protections, select the best breast pump for their needs and get answers to their most common questions about going back to work.”
To learn more and download the toolkit, visit https://byramhealthcare.com/working-moms-guide-to-breast-feeding
The survey follows one released by Byram Healthcare last year, revealing the vast majority – 82% – of expectant mothers in the U.S. do not know their three main breastfeeding rights under the Affordable Care Act. These benefits include that breast pumps and lactation consultant sessions are covered at no cost by insurance, and employers must provide breaks for mothers to pump or express milk. For more information about receiving a no-cost breast pump through insurance, visit https://breastpumps.byramhealthcare.com/
About Byram Healthcare Centers, Inc.
Byram Healthcare, part of the Owens & Minor family, has been a national leader in disposable medical supply delivery since 1968. Byram provides quality supplies, services and support, specializing in diabetes supplies, ostomy supplies, wound care supplies, urology supplies, incontinence supplies, enteral nutrition products and breast pumps. In 2017, Byram was acquired by Owens & Minor, a global healthcare services company, to expand the organization’s ability to serve the continuum of care into the patient’s home. Byram Healthcare is more prepared than ever to tackle the challenging, changing healthcare landscape. Byram Healthcare is here to deliver the products, services, and support needed to maximize clinical outcomes and manage complicated benefits. For more information, visit byramhealthcare.com.
About Owens & Minor
Owens & Minor, Inc. (NYSE: OMI) is a global healthcare solutions company with integrated technologies, products, and services aligned to deliver significant and sustained value for healthcare providers and manufacturers across the continuum of care. With 17,000 dedicated teammates serving healthcare industry customers in 90 countries, Owens & Minor helps to reduce total costs across the supply chain by optimizing episode and point-of-care performance, freeing up capital and clinical resources, and managing contracts to optimize financial performance. A FORTUNE 500 company, Owens & Minor has annualized revenues exceeding $10 billion, including contributions from the Halyard Health S&IP business. Founded in 1882, Owens & Minor has operated continuously from its Richmond, Virginia, headquarters. Today, the company now has distribution, production, customer service and sales facilities located across Asia, Europe, Latin America, and the U.S. For more information about Owens & Minor, visit owens-minor.com, follow @Owens_Minor on Twitter, and connect on LinkedIn at www.linkedin.com/company/owens-&-minor.
The Byram Working Moms Survey was conducted by Wakefield Research (www.wakefieldresearch.com) among 1,000 nationally representative U.S. working mothers of kids ages two and under, who have recently breastfed or who are currently breastfeeding, between July 9 and July 17, 2019, using an email invitation and an online survey. Quotas have been set to ensure reliable and accurate representation of the U.S. working mother population of kids ages two and under.
RoseComm for Byram Healthcare