Sen. Blakespear Introduces Legislation to Ensure Court Users Can Breastfeed
SB 949 requires superior courts to allow a person during a court proceeding to take a break, if necessary, to express breast milk
SACRAMENTO – Sen. Catherine Blakespear, D-Encinitas, introduced legislation on Thursday to ensure that anyone who is in court and needs to pump breast milk will be given a break to do it.
Present law requires the superior court to provide employees with the use of a lactation room and beginning July 1, 2026, to have a lactation room available to the public in any courthouse that has one for court employees. Senate Bill 949 goes a step further and requires superior courts to provide courtroom breaks for a non-employee, such as a lawyer or juror, who needs to pump breast milk.
“Accommodating the needs of mothers and ensuring they can breastfeed or express milk when they need to is essential for the health and well-being of both mothers and their babies,” Blakespear said. “Senate Bill 949 makes it clear that courts must fully accommodate all people who must be at court, not just court employees.”
The idea for the legislation came from a District 38 resident who had to specifically describe the reason for a request to take a break in a court proceeding and leave to pump breast milk. With SB 949 in place, such breaks will be treated as routine accessibility accommodations and not as discretionary disruptions to proceedings.
Elected in 2022, Sen. Blakespear represents Senate District 38, which covers northern San Diego County and part of Orange County. To learn more about the district and Sen. Blakespear, visit her Senate website.