Jul 16, 1999
Press Release

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Late last night, an amendment introduced by Congressional Women’s Caucus Co- Chair Carolyn Maloney (D-NY) to ensure that none of the funds made available in Treasury, Postal appropriations may be used to implement, administer, or enforce any prohibition on women breastfeeding their children in Federal buildings or on Federal property, passed by a voice vote in the U.S. House of Representatives.

Congresswoman Maloney’s legislation was offered as an amendment to H.R. 2590, the Treasury Department, United States Postal Service appropriations bill.

"Last night, Congress set a powerful example by ensuring a woman’s right to breastfeed," Maloney said. "Although many states have already passed laws to protect breastfeeding in public, women on federal property have been asked to leave museums, parks, and even the U.S. Capitol building. Experts tell us that breastfeeding is an essential practice for ensuring infants receive the nutrients they need to develop. I am proud that the federal government is setting the standard of welcoming a woman’s decision to breastfeed her child in our nation’s capital and other federal property."

The Maloney Amendment was co-sponsored by Reps. Connie Morella (R-MD), Chris Shays (R-CT), Barbara Lee (D-CA), Sheila Jackson-Lee (D-TX), and Lucille Roybal-Allard (D-CA). Congresswoman Maloney has also introduced a full Right to Breastfeed Act, H.R. 1848, which protects a woman’s right to breastfeed her child on any part of federal property where she and her child have a right to be. Although Maloney’s full federal protection bill has been endorsed by the Women’s Congressional Caucus, the House leadership has stalled on bringing her amendment to the floor. Last week, an amendment introduced by Congresswoman Lucille Roybal-Allard (D-CA) that protects a woman’s right to breastfeed her child on any federal property receiving funding under the U.S. Department of Interior’s appropriations passed in the House.

Congresswoman Maloney is the Chair of the Congressional Caucus on Women’s Issues and is a steadfast advocate for the rights of women and children. Maloney has also introduced H.R. 1478, the Pregnancy Discrimination Act Amendment of 1999; H.R. 1163, Breastfeeding Promotion and Employers’ Tax Incentive Act of 1999; and the Safe and Effective Breastpumps Act.