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What’s in a Law

Posted by on February 6, 2012

Just got this link as a reference on the WILDLY different state laws on breastfeeding from a friend.

breastfeeding law
I did a quick search through the public breastfeeding laws in states that are close to us and those we might visit on vacation.

Just browsing through the list, I have decided that Mississippi‘s breastfeeding law is fairly straightforward, but like most other states, it has no enforcement provision!

In legal terms an enforcement provision explains how the state will enforce the law with fines or other penalties for those who break the law.  Most states don’t have an enforcement provision written into their laws – who knew?

Missouri a state which we visit on a semi-monthly basis to see grandparents and family states “with as much discretion as possible.”  Now how exactly are you supposed to do that?  I’m all for discretion, but the lawyers who wrote this law have obviously never met a baby who fights a nursing cover or just likes to look around.

Other states that are in our region:

  • Tennessee says something about 12 months or younger, so I guess extended nursing got overlooked when they wrote that law.
  • Alabama and Arkansas are pretty standard and straightforward.
  • Louisiana has a law so long that I didn’t even bother reading past the first 3 lines!  That said, they do have enforcement provisions, so WAY TO GO Louisiana!!!!


Places far away:

By far the funniest state law that I took the time to read over was California.  You know the progressive, liberal, state over on the west coast…. they aren’t supposed to breastfeed in a friend’s home without permission!  Of all the special circumstances to consider why did your friend’s home make it into the law?  Does anyone read these things?

Vermont’s law  is detailed and comes with enforcement provisions!  Hiking in Vermont this summer would be fun although traveling there probably not so much.

Hawaii is looking really great now!  Not only is it warm and sunny, but they have great breastfeeding laws backed up by some decent enforcement provisions!  AWESOME!!!!  That’s a long plane ride for adults so I doubt we would tackle that with a baby, but we did miss a few things last time…. a girl can dream big, right!


Please go check out to read the laws on public breastfeeding and pumping in the workplace for your state or any state you plan on visiting.  There is a lot of legal info all on one website which I LOVE, love, love!

Don’t forget to look for the enforcement provisions.  Why are enforcement provisions important, basically no provision means the state or police can’t write a ticket or fine against those not following the law.  Want to know more about enforcement provisions go read about it here!!!


I have never encountered a problem with breastfeeding my son in public in MS, TN, or MO over the last 7 months, but I’m certain other people have and that is very sad!

Did you ever have to fight for your right to breastfeed in public?  Were you forced to cite state and federal laws to be able to pump at work?

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