Promoting Breastfeeding Access For Working Moms Focus Of Month-Long Campaign
July 31, 2015
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 31, 2015
Contact: Communications Office
PROMOTING BREASTFEEDING ACCESS FOR WORKING MOMS FOCUS OF MONTH-LONG CAMPAIGN
TALLAHASSEE—The Florida Department of Health is celebrating World Breastfeeding Week, Aug. 1–7, 2015. This year’s theme—Breastfeeding and Work: Let’s Make it Work!—highlights the benefits for mothers and babies reaching consistent breastfeeding goals. Women who breastfeed in any work setting should be provided with time, space and support to succeed.
“Breastfeeding is an essential step for the health of both mother and baby, and the benefits last well beyond the infancy,” said State Surgeon General and Secretary of Health Dr. John Armstrong. “The more that communities support breastfeeding, the more mothers and babies will benefit from breastfeeding.”
The department is working to promote breastfeeding as a vital health activity, and encourages breastfeeding-friendly hospitals, child care facilities, work places and communities.
How to feed the newborn is one of the most important decisions a family can make, and most women who choose to breastfeed have a specific goal in mind.
- Breastfed infants have a reduced risk of infections, asthma, obesity and SIDS compared with formula-fed infants;
- Mothers who breastfeed have a reduced risk of breast cancer, ovarian cancer and postpartum depression compared to mothers who don't breastfeed; and
- It's estimated that $13 billion would be saved per year if 90 percent of U.S. infants were breastfed exclusively for six months.
To reach the goal of exclusive breastfeeding for at least six months mothers need supportive maternity leave policies, flexible work hours, infant and child-care at or near the workplace, and private facilities for expressing and storing breastmilk. It takes time and practice to learn how to breastfeed, both for mother and baby, and to establish a good milk supply.
Healthiest Weight Florida, in partnership with the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC), Healthy Start, the Florida Child Care Food Program, and the Bureau of Chronic Disease Prevention has a variety of tools available for mothers and families, as well as employers, childcare facilities, and hospitals and health care professionals. Visit http://www.healthiestweightflorida.com/activities/breastfeeding.html for more information.
Local WIC agencies offer resources and staff to help breastfeeding mothers. WIC agencies may have International Board Certified Lactation Consultants who have a high level of specialized knowledge in breastfeeding to assist clients. WIC agencies also have Breastfeeding Peer Counseling Programs. The trained peer counselors are chosen from the same socio/economic/ethnic groups as WIC clients and have successfully breastfed their own babies. Breastfeeding peer counselors provide mother-to-mother basic breastfeeding education and support to pregnant and breastfeeding moms.
Healthiest Weight Florida is a public-private collaboration bringing together state agencies, nonprofit organizations, businesses and entire communities to help Florida's children and adults make consistent, informed choices about healthy eating and active living. To learn more about how to be active and make nutritious food choices visit www.healthiestweightflorida.com.
The department works to protect, promote and improve the health of all people in Florida through integrated state, county and community efforts.