Fiscal Year 2021 Appropriations Signed Into Law

Congress passed and the President signed the Fiscal Year 2021 Omnibus Spending and COVID-19 Relief Package (H.R. 133). The legislative package included all 12 appropriations measures as well as additional COVID-19-related aid. Read the press release.

Provisions impacting breastfeeding families are included in four of the twelve appropriations bills:

Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies, 2021

The Labor-HHS appropriations bill includes a variety of provisions that impact infant feeding.

Federal Program Funding in the Labor-HHS Bill:

  • $9.5M for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Hospitals Promoting Breastfeeding program, a $500K increase from FY 2020. Funding for this program comes from the Prevention and Public Health Fund to support evidence-based practice improvements in hospitals, with an emphasis on physician and care provider education, with the aim of supporting breastfeeding and increasing breastfeeding rates.
  • $63.95M for the Racial and Ethnic Approaches to Community Health program, a $4M increase from FY 2020. The REACH program works to reduce racial and ethnic health disparities through local, culturally appropriate programs, including breastfeeding support programs.
  • $22M for the Good Health and Wellness in Indian Country program, a $1M increase from FY 2020. Long-term program goals include increased breastfeeding rates.
  • $712.7M for the Maternal and Child Health (MCH) Block Grant program, an increase of $25M from FY 2020. Breastfeeding rates are included in the MCH Block Grant National Performance Measures.
  • $128M for the Healthy Start program, a $2.5M increase from FY 2020. The Healthy Start program implements community-based interventions to improve the health of mothers and children, including breastfeeding education.

Federal Agency Funding in the Labor-HHS Bill:

  • $7.9B for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, an increase of $125.3M from FY 2020.
  • $56.9M for the CDC Division of Nutrition, Physical Activity, and Obesity (DNPAO), level funding from FY 2020. DNPAO is the CDC division responsible for many breastfeeding support initiatives, including the development of the Breastfeeding Report Card.
  • $7.2B for the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), an increase of $151M from FY 2020. HRSA Maternal & Child Health Bureau programs promote the nutritional well-being of maternal and child populations across the lifespan, including through breastfeeding support.
  • $246M for the U.S. Department of Labor, Wage and Hour Division (WHD), a $4M increase from FY 2020. WHD is responsible for enforcement of the Break Time for Nursing Mothers law.
  • $61.8M for the Office of Minority Health, a $3.1M increase from FY 2020. OMH works to improve the health of racial and ethnic minority populations through the development of health policies and programsthat will help eliminate health disparities.
  • $35.1M for the Office on Women’s Health, a $1.5M increase from FY 2020. OWH hosts a variety of resources to support breastfeeding familiesin health care, community, and workplace settings. 

Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agencies, 2021

The Agriculture Appropriations bill includes $6B in overall funding for the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC). The bill also sustains last year's increased investment in WIC's Breastfeeding Peer Counselor Program, continuing funding at $90M, as well as an additional $14M for infrastructure.

In addition, the Secretary is directed to publish a report on the nutrition outcomes achieved by the McGovern-Dole International Food for Education and Child Nutrition Program and the Food for Peace Title II program. The report should be publicly available and track progress towards global targets on stunting, wasting, anemia, and breastfeeding.

Financial Services and General Government, 2021

The Financial Services and General Government bill continues the longstanding annual provision allowing that a woman may breastfeed her child at any location in a Federal building or on Federal property where they are otherwise authorized to be.

Homeland Security, 2021

The Homeland Security bill continues to direct the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) to provide semiannual reports on the total number of pregnant or lactating women in ICE custody.

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Each year funding is allocated to a variety of federally funded programs that include breastfeeding support through the federal appropriations process. Learn more about the federal budget process.

Learn more about the status of appropriations bills with the Congressional Research Service Appropriations Status Table: FY2021 and subscribe to the USBC mailing list to stay up to date on how the federal budget impacts breastfeeding families. 

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