Bill Text: HI SCR170 | 2019 | Regular Session | Amended

Bill Title: Requesting The Department Of Accounting And General Services To Dedicate One Private Room In The Hawaii State Capitol Building For Employees And Visitors To Breastfeed Or Express Milk.

Spectrum: Moderate Partisan Bill (Democrat 9-1)

Status: (Introduced) 2019-03-27 - Report adopted, as amended (SD 1) and referred to WAM. [SCR170 Detail]

Download: Hawaii-2019-SCR170-Amended.html


S.C.R. NO.



S.D. 1














     WHEREAS, the American Academy of Pediatrics, American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, American Academy of Family Physicians, Academy of Breastfeeding Medicine, American College of Nurse-Midwives, American Dietetic Association, American Public Health Association, World Health Organization, and many other health organizations recommend that infants be exclusively breastfed for the first six months of life and continue to be breastfed until twelve months of age or longer; and


     WHEREAS, over three-quarters of women who give birth in Hawaii and breastfeed at least once are likely to continue breastfeeding eight weeks after delivery; and


     WHEREAS, federal and state law require employers to provide reasonable break time and a location, other than a bathroom, for employees to express breast milk; and


     WHEREAS, Hawaii's employment practices law prohibits employers and labor organizations from refusing to hire or employ, barring or discharging from employment, withholding pay from, demoting, or penalizing a lactating employee for breastfeeding or expressing milk at the workplace; and


     WHEREAS, in 2011, the United States Surgeon General's Call to Action to Support Breastfeeding identified barriers to optimal breastfeeding in health care practices, employment, communities, research, public health infrastructure, public and professional education, and social networks, and recommended methods in which families, communities, employers, and health care professionals may help eliminate those barriers to improve breastfeeding rates and increase support for breastfeeding; and


     WHEREAS, the United States Surgeon General's Call to Action to Support Breastfeeding also estimates savings of $13,000,000,000 if ninety percent of families in the United States followed guidelines to exclusively breastfeed and $10,500,000,000 would be saved if eighty percent followed the guidelines; and


     WHEREAS, in 2019, the United States Breastfeeding Committee's Hawaii Breastfeeding Report defined the optimal breastfeeding rate as ninety percent of infants breastfed according to medical recommendations and estimated the resulting medical costs of sub-optimal breastfeeding in Hawaii are $7,297,260, the non-medical costs of sub-optimal breastfeeding in Hawaii are $3,811,290, and the death costs of sub-optimal breastfeeding rates are $34,300,525; and


     WHEREAS, research shows that breast milk and breastfeeding provide advantages with regard to general health, growth, and development, while significantly decreasing the risk of a large number of acute and chronic diseases such as sudden infant death syndrome, asthma, allergies, diabetes, diarrhea, atopic dermatitis, viral and bacterial infections, childhood obesity, childhood leukemia, necrotizing enterocolitis, and infant mortality; and


     WHEREAS, mothers who breastfeed have a decreased risk of breast, uterine, and ovarian cancer; postpartum depression; anxiety disorder; cardiovascular disease; and osteoporosis later in life; and


     WHEREAS, the nutrients exclusive to breast milk are vital to the growth, development, and maintenance of the human brain and cannot be manufactured; and


     WHEREAS, breastfeeding has positive economic impacts on families by decreasing the need to pay for medical care for a sick infant and eliminating the need to purchase infant formula; and


     WHEREAS, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's The CDC Guide to Strategies to Support Breastfeeding Mothers and Babies recognizes higher rates of breastfeeding initiation and duration amongst women on maternity leave, who have breastfeeding support programs in the workplace, or who work part-time in lieu of full-time; and


     WHEREAS, the health benefits of breastfeeding result in lower health care costs for employers, less time off for employees to care for sick children, enhancement of an employer's image, and higher productivity and employee loyalty; and


     WHEREAS, employers, employees, and society benefit from supporting a mother's decision to breastfeed and from reducing the obstacles to initiating and continuing breastfeeding; and


     WHEREAS, the United States Office of Personnel Management's Guide for Establishing a Federal Nursing Mother's Program identified federal agencies with successful worksite programs: National Security Agency; National Institutes of Health; Department of Energy Headquarters; and the Congressional Program; and


     WHEREAS, this body recognizes the unique health, economic, and societal benefits that breastfeeding provides to infants, mothers, families, and the community as a whole and affirms that the State of Hawaii should work to ensure barriers to the initiation and continuation of breastfeeding are removed; and


     WHEREAS, this body encourages employers to strongly support and encourage breastfeeding by striving to provide appropriate space and time accommodations to allow employees to express milk; now, therefore,


     BE IT RESOLVED by the Senate of the Thirtieth Legislature of the State of Hawaii, Regular Session of 2019, the House of Representatives concurring, that the Department of Accounting and General Services is requested to dedicate one private room in the Hawaii State Capitol Building for employees and visitors to breastfeed or express milk, and which is equipped with cleaning supplies, an electrical outlet for electronic breast pump usage, and a refrigerator to store breast milk; and


     BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the room be dedicated to Dr. Sylvia Pager, who was the first International Board-Certified Lactation Consultant Physician in Hawaii and worked to support and protect breastfeeding families in Hawaii; and


     BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that certified copies of this Concurrent Resolution be transmitted to the Governor, Comptroller, Building Manager of the State Capitol Building, and Dr. David Pager.

Report Title: 

Breastfeeding; Capitol Building; Department of Accounting and General Services