MSU supports lactating parents and encourages supervisors to provide a supportive environment and private location for parents who choose to lactate to feed their babies or express/pump their breast/chest milk during the workday.

The MSU WorkLife Office partners with the Expectant Parent Organization to offer a New Parent Series of webinars during the Fall and Spring semesters for our MSU Faculty and Staff. These include (2) 4-part webinar series focused on Lactation Support and New Infant Care. More information on the Expectant Parent Organization here.

There are lactation rooms located across campus. Two buildings offer weekend and after-hours Lactation Rooms: the MSU Union Building and the MSU Main Library. If you are on campus during the weekend or after-hours and may need a Lactation Room, please feel free to utilize these two locations. Prior to use, please be sure to check with the location regarding their hours. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact the MSU WorkLife Office via email ( or telephone (517-353-1635) between the hours of 8am-5pm Monday-Friday.

Lactation Educational Series

Free to MSU faculty, staff, and student parents

Lactation: How to Get Started and Keep Going

Although lactation is natural, it is a learned skill. This four-part program is designed to give pregnant parents and their partners information on preparing to lactate and strategies for continuing lactation upon returning to work.

Presenter: Natosha Sage-El, Expectant Parents Organization 
Dates: see calendar for upcoming sessions

Cost: Free!

  • Week 1: Introduction to Lactation: Benefits, How Lactating Works
  • Week 2: Baby is Here! Getting Started: The Mechanics of Lactation, Positioning, Latching On, Feeding Patterns, Challenges
  • Week 3: Maintaining Lactation: Lifestyle, Expressing and Storing Milk, Returning to Work
  • Week 4: Lactation Transitions: Introducing Solid Foods and Weaning

Lactation Links

Hale Publishing provides several resources about lactation. One of the most popular publications is “Medications & Mothers’ Milk.”

This fact sheet provides general information on the break time requirement for lactating parents in the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (“PPACA”), which took effect when the PPACA was signed into law on March 23, 2010 (P.L. 111-148). This law amended Section 7 of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA).

The International Lactation Consultant Association® (ILCA®) is the member association for International Board Certified Lactation Consultants® (IBCLC®) and other healthcare professionals who care for breastfeeding families. ILCA membership is open to all who support and promote breastfeeding. Members may join at any time and do not need to be an IBCLC in order to be a member. Members are also able to find a lactation consultant here.

The mission of MIBFN is to optimize state and community support of lactation by leading collaborative actions for advocacy, education, and coalition building. The organization offers several resources and an “Anytime, Anywhere Project” to support breastfeeding. They also publish a handout called “How Lactation Support Benefits Employers.”

The Capital Area Breastfeeding Coalition helps foster lactation in and around Lansing, Michigan. The coalition is one of a number of organizations under the statewide Michigan Breastfeeding Network.

The information you need to know now, when it comes to lactating to feed your baby. Get tips on prepping, pumping, managing feedings while traveling with your little one, and much more.

The mission of La Leche League is to help parents worldwide to lactate through parent-to-parent support, encouragement, information, and education, and to promote a better understanding of lactation as an important element in the healthy development of the baby and caregiver.

A comprehensive program that is designed to educate employers about the value of supporting lactating employees in the workplace. They also offer The Business Case for Breastfeeding: Employees’ Guide to Breastfeeding and Working, a downloadable toolkit for lactating parents going back to work after parental leave.

MSU Lactation Guidelines

In recognition of the well-documented health advantages of lactation for infants and parents, and in compliance with provisions of the Affordable Care Act, MSU provides a supportive environment to enable lactating parents to express their milk during work hours. The following work/education support guidelines are to be communicated across campus to all current employees, and should also be included in employee orientations.

University Responsibilities

Applies to all MSU employees

Lactating employees who choose to continue providing breast/chest milk for their infants after returning to work may receive:

 Lactating employees are allowed to lactate or express milk during work hours using their normal breaks and meal times. For time that may be needed beyond the usual break times, employees may make up the time as negotiated with their supervisors with a flexible work schedule, or may use personal or vacation leave.

To find spaces on campus, use this link: Lactation Room Location Map
A private room (not a toilet stall or restroom) shall be available for employees to lactate or express milk. The room will be private and sanitary, located near a sink with running water for washing hands and rinsing out pump equipment, and have an electrical outlet. If employees prefer, they may also lactate or express milk in their own private offices, or in other comfortable locations agreed upon in consultation with the employee’s supervisor. The minimum room recommendations are as follows: 4’x 5’ private space (Business Case for Breastfeeding, 2017), locked door, comfortable chair, electrical outlet, access to a sink, adequate lighting, and ventilation.

 MSU does not provide equipment. Employees/lactating parents are responsible for their own equipment. Consult your health insurance policy for pump coverage.

 Once informed, supervisors shall support and make information available to pregnant and lactating employees about the university’s worksite lactation support program, and for discussing practices that will help facilitate each employee’s infant feeding goals. It is expected that all employees will assist in providing a positive atmosphere of support for lactating employees.

Employee Responsibilities

 Employees who wish to express milk during the work period should keep supervisors informed of their needs to leave at other than break times so that appropriate accommodations can be made to satisfy the needs of both the employee and the university. Ideally the conversation should occur and arrangements should be made prior to the employee’s parental leave.

 While custodial staff are responsible for cleaning and maintaining space according to set guidelines, lactating employees are also expected to help keep milk expression areas clean after use. This responsibility extends to both the designated milk expression area, as well as the other areas where expressing milk will occur.

 Employees should label all milk expressed with their name and date collected. Expressed milk can be stored in departmental refrigerators if available. Each employee is responsible for proper storage of their milk using the departmental refrigerator and/or personal storage coolers.

 Employees may need to request keys or room access from the designated building contact person when locked. When more than one lactating employee needs to use the designated lactation room, employees can use a sign-up sheet/calendar provided by the room contact person to schedule and arrange for milk expression times.

Benefits of Lactation and Workplace Return on Investment

Reduced absenteeism, reduced health care costs, increased retention, higher productivity and loyalty, and positive impacts on climate as a family-friendly workplace are among the business benefits of lactation support. Babies are healthier and parents miss work less often.

  • Lactation lowers health care costs because babies fed with human milk visit the physician less often (US Department of Health and Human Services study found for every 1,000 babies not fed with human milk there were 2,033 extra physician visits, 212 extra hospitalization days and 609 prescriptions for three illnesses: ear, respiratory and gastrointestinal infections).
  • Lactating parents heal more quickly and suffer less postpartum depression.
  • The Michigan Breastfeeding Network indicated a retention rate of 92% of the parental workforce in companies with lactation support programs compared to a national average of 59% (2015).


MSU is an award-winning supporter of lactating parents, and the WorkLife Office provides a university-wide lactation support program.

Prenatal and postpartum lactation classes and informational materials are available for mothers, fathers, expectant parents, and partners. These Lactation Education Series classes are sponsored by the WorkLife Office and are held during the fall and spring semesters as opportunities for parents to receive free information and peer support.