Credit: Emory Healthcare

Under the new proposed amendments of the Sex Discrimination Act, those who discriminate against breastfeeding mothers would be facing serious legal actions.

On the basis of family responsibilities of both men and women in all scopes of employment, Robert McClelland, attorney-general said, the government would revise the legislation by providing protections for breastfeeding mums from discrimination.

The new legislative change, said Mr McClelland, would offer better protection for students and workers from sexual harassment, and guarantee that protections from sex discrimination worked equally for both men and women.

It also sets up breastfeeding as a distinct ground of discrimination, he said.

The proposed amendments carry the response of the government to a report about eliminating discrimination and promoting gender equality by the Senate Standing Committee on Legal and Constitutional Affairs.

Mr McClelland said, Ensuring that anti-discrimination law meets the needs of contemporary Australians is an important part of ensuring the promotion and protection of human rights.

He believes it is a vital move - strengthening protections for workers with family responsibilities - to achieve economic equality for both men and women.

Other suggestions from the committee report would be considered by the government as part of an approach to merge anti-discrimination legislations into a single complete law, said McClelland.