MTA Press Releases

Press Release
July 22, 2019
IMMEDIATE
LIRR to Introduce Private Space for Breastfeeding Moms at Penn Station
Latest Customer-Friendly Initiative Complements LIRR Care, My LIRR Loyalty, LIRR Summer Saturdays, Help Points and myLIRR.org Train Finder

MTA Long Island Rail Road President Phillip Eng today announced that the LIRR will install a private space at Penn Station for moms who are nursing children on the go. The space, known as a lactation pod, is planned to be installed in the LIRR’s customer waiting room by this fall. It will be available upon request to the waiting room attendant.

Lactation pods are now located in many airports. LIRR customers, Assemblywoman Kimberly Jean-Pierre and Assemblywoman Nily Rozic had recently asked the LIRR to find a way to accommodate breastfeeding moms.

“My approach to operating the LIRR is to put safety and customer service first,” Eng said. “When customers request a change that we can accommodate, if we can do it reasonably, we will make that change. I’m glad that in this case we were able to find a way to put this in place relatively quickly. I hope it makes traveling with us easier and more pleasant. I hope it will let more New Yorkers choose the LIRR as a form of travel.”

The forthcoming lactation pod installation will be the latest in a series of customer-friendly initiatives adopted by the LIRR within the last 14 months. Others are:

  • LIRR Care, a program allowing those with special mobility needs to call ahead to receive personalized attention on trains at terminals.
  • LIRR Summer Saturdays, which allows monthly ticketholders to travel with up to four friends and family members at a rate of just $1 per person anywhere the LIRR goes.
  • Pilot program for Help Points, a kiosk on station platforms with a highly visible strobe light that customers can use to alert crews of an incoming train that a customer needs special attention boarding a train.
  • myLIRR.org, a web tool optimized for smartphones that allows customers to find the real-time location of approaching trains on a map, refreshed every 3- to 5-seconds.
  • My LIRR Loyalty, which gives LIRR monthly ticketholders special deals and discounts from merchants throughout the LIRR’s service region.

The lactation pod is made by Mamava, a Burlington, Vt.-based company specializing in lactation space design and manufacturing. It is fully accessible to all customers in accordance with the Americans with Disabilities Act. It will have bench seating, shelves, mirrors and coat hooks, occupancy-activated lighting, and dual-outlet USB ports.

The pod has been ordered. Next steps before it arrives are shipping, assembly, and placement. 

The LIRR customer waiting room is near the Seventh Avenue entrance to Penn Station. It is staffed 24 hours a day, seven days a week. If the lactation pod proves successful, others could be deployed elsewhere in the MTA network.