Accommodation for Pregnancy and Returning Mothers

Pierce County's commitment

The County is committed to accommodations for pregnant employees, returning mothers, and providing lactation rooms following Washington State law. There are designated lactation rooms. Please reach out to your HR Partner for the locations. If one is not available in your work area, it is the department's responsibility to create a designated space. It is also their responsibility to provide a modified schedule to accommodate longer or more frequent breaks. 

Know your rights 

The County follows Washington State law concerning accommodations for pregnancy, returning mothers, and lactation rooms. The sites below provide detailed information for the employee and department:

Pregnancy Accommodations (wa.gov) 

RCW 43.10.005: Workplace pregnancy accommodations—Unfair practices—Definitions. (wa.gov) 

Section 7(r) of the Fair Labor Standards Act – Break Time for Nursing Mothers Provision | U.S. Department of Labor (dol.gov) 

Key points

  1.  The employee should first reach out to the EEO/ADA Officer to request accommodations so the Officer may work with the department to reasonably provide them.
  2.   The department must provide accommodations and cannot request a doctor's note if the employee requests:
    1.  Frequent, longer, or additional breaks.
    2. Modified food or drink policies.
    3. Ability to sit more frequently.
    4. Not to lift objects over 17 pounds.
    5. The need to express milk.
  3. The employee should reach out to their HR Partner for lactation rooms located at their workplace. If there are none, the department must work with the EEO/ADA Officer to create a designated space to include at minimum:
    1. complete privacy
    2. way to safely store milk
    3. outlet
    4. chair
    5. table
  4.  A bathroom is not an acceptable option for a lactation room.