The Illinois Board of Admissions to the Bar has seen the error of their ways, overturning a previous decision that denied a woman special accommodation for breast milk pumping.
Earlier in 2014, the Board denied Kristin Pagano extra time for breast milk pumping. The Board also denied other requests made by Pagano, such as being able to use a private bathroom for pumping.
Pagano, licensed to practice law in California, stated her initial request was denied, “because nursing is not a physical disability and not covered under the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA).”
In a convincing letter to the Board, Pagano argued that being given accommodation for breastfeeding in an exam setting or the workplace does not create an advantage for nursing mothers. Rather, Pagano noted that breastfeeding is a “medical necessity” and allows a nursing mother equal opportunity.
After reading Pagano’s letter, the Board, in a November 25 decision, overturned its previous denial, stating, “it was the right thing to do.”
Pagano will now be allowed to breastfeed without the extra time taken being held against her.
The Board’s decision coincided with the introduction of a new Illinois law that makes pregnant mothers a protected class.
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