The first week of August marks a very important week of recognition for mothers in America. August first through the seventh is World Breastfeeding Week. The Indiana State Department of Health lists breastfeeding as not only healthy to the infant but mentions the benefits for the mother as well. The theme this year is “Breastfeeding and Work: Let’s Make it Work.” All around the world, advocates for families are calling for action to support women in being able to combine breastfeeding and work.
Even locally, people are doing their part to promote awareness. Pulaski Memorial Hospital and the Heartland Breastfeeding Coalition are teaming-up and asking the community to join them in celebrating the week on Wednesday, August 5 from 10 am until noon (EST). Join both organizations at a reception with goodies and and door prizes being held in the Medical Office Building at the back of Pulaski Memorial Hospital.
Aside from attending the event, you can also help out by encouraging employers to become family, parent, baby and mother-friendly workplaces.
Indiana Code 16-35-6 allows a woman to breastfeed her child anywhere the law allows her to be. Codes are also in place that require employers to provide reasonable paid breaks for an employee to provide breast milk for her infant. The employer must also make reasonable efforts to provide a room or other location, other than a toilet stall,where the employee can perform the task in private and make reasonable efforts to provide for a refrigerator to store the breast milk.
This week you can support family members, friends and co-workers who breastfeed by informing people about the latest in national and state legislation that protects women wanting to continue to work and breastfeed. It is not illegal and it is not immoral, breastfeeding is inherent and healthy for both the developing infant and their mother. World Breastfeeding Weeks exists to erase the stigma behind a completely natural and necessary action.