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Federal legislation gives nod to breast-feeding in public.

Chalk up a victory for nursing moms. Legislation that President Bill Clinton signed into law this fall made breast-feeding legal on all federal property where a woman and her child have a right to be. Under the law, it is now illegal to ask women who are nursing their infant children to move from federal property.

"Women in America have gained the right to be mothers in the truest sense," said Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-N.Y.), who sponsored the bill. "Breast-feeding is not a crime. But mothers who have simply tried to provide their children with the most healthy form of nutrition possible have been made to feel as if they are engaging in some sort of lewd behavior. Although many states have already passed laws to protect breast-feeding in public, women on federal property have been asked to leave museums, parks, and even the U.S. Capitol building." (Moms Cry Out for Protection of Their Right to Breast-Feed, TRIAL, Oct. 1999, at 87.)

Three other bills that protect women's right to breast-feed--the Pregnancy Discrimination Act Amendment of 1999, the Breastfeeding Promotion and Employers' Tax Incentive Act of 1999, and the Safe and Effective Breastpumps Act--are pending in Congress.
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Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Dec 1, 1999
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