San Jose City Councilman pushes for lactation rooms for mothers

A San Jose City Councilman says new moms should have better places to breastfeed their babies.

He wants the city to fund special lactation rooms at several city-owned facilities.

It’s a problem councilman Ash Kalra encountered recently when a visitor asked to use the pumping room at city hall. Since their isn’t one, the only place they could direct the woman to was the bathroom. Which Kalra said “Was clearly unacceptable. So what ended up happening was we cleared out my  office, closed the shades, and she was able to use my office in order to pump.”

He says something needs to change. He’s requesting funding be put in this year’s city budget to add lactation stations to three city-owned facilities.

Those buildings would include the Children’s Discovery Museum, Happy Hollow Park and Zoo and San Jose City Hall. He says when the buildings were built, breastfeeding wasn’t a consideration. “It wasn’t really thought of at the time. It should have been, but it wasn’t. Now we’re thinking about it.” The rooms would have sinks, seating and outlets to plug in pumps.

The Children’s Museum will start construction on their lactation room in September.