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State’s occupational license requirement for lactation consultants violates the state constitution

The Georgia Supreme Court ruled late last week that the state’s occupational license requirement for lactation consultants violates the state constitution. As the Institute for Justice reports, “The licensure law would have required even experienced lactation care providers to become International Board Certified Lactation Consultants (IBCLC), involving two years of college courses, 300+ hours of clinical work, and an expensive exam. This would have made state licensure unattainable for many.”

The Georgia Center for Opportunity’s (GCO) take: “Bottom line, the Georgia Supreme Court made the right call here,” said Eric Cochling, chief program officer and general counsel for GCO. “Occupational licensing is needed in some industries and job categories due to public health and safety concerns, but the laws on the books today in many cases are an unnecessary roadblock to employment for workers. When you add the cost of becoming certified as a lactation consultant to the fact that there is virtually no discernable benefit to public safety or health from imposing the new restrictions, the Supreme Court’s decision is clearly the right one in this case. As our state and nation continue to face a shortage of skilled and qualified workers in a variety of occupations, it’s important that government not throw up unnecessary roadblocks. Unfortunately, occupational licenses are frequently one of them.”

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