Workplaces in Singapore told to increase lactation facilities

Workplaces should have more lactation rooms so that working mothers can have paid nursing breaks, said MP Louis Ng.
By: | August 4, 2022

Member of Parliament (MP) Louis Ng cited a local survey of about 970 respondents by the Breastfeeding Mothers’ Support Group Singapore, which showed that eight in 10 working mothers said one of the things they need most is a lactation room.

The same survey found that the challenges of expressing milk at work is one of the top three reasons why mothers stop breastfeeding. 

In his adjournment motion, Ng said, “Dedicated lactation rooms are the best way to facilitate breastfeeding. Today, too many mothers are forced to use undignified spaces like toilets or storerooms. Such mixed-use spaces are often dirty or disruptive, and the stress can block mothers from expressing milk.” 

Currently, the Ministry of National Development requires one lactation room for buildings with a gross floor area of 10,000 sq m or more. 

Ng proposed that the Government lower this threshold so that more buildings are required to have such a room. Larger buildings with a higher gross floor area should also have more than one lactation room, he said. 

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He also proposed that lactation breaks be legislated. Two-thirds of working mothers in the survey he referred to said they do not have time at work to express milk.