Friday, August 3, 2012

World Breastfeeding Week: Whenever, Wherever

Kudos to the state of Maine for creating a new kind of breastfeeding campaign. One of the things we always talk about in the lactation community is how breastfeeding needs to be supported, promoted and protected. We do a great job of promoting breastfeeding in our culture and are truly terrible at both supporting and protecting moms who breastfeed. The Whenever, Wherever campaign aims to help with the protection piece, by informing and encouraging local businesses on how to welcome nursing mothers.

Businesses who join the campaign become role models in the community. Becoming a member is as simple as displaying a decal in the window of your business that says "We welcome nursing moms, whenever wherever"; training employees that mothers are welcome to breastfeed and hanging an educational poster in a staff space like a break room; and welcoming nursing moms, and not tolerating any harassment of them while on the premises.

This reminds me of the awesome flyer that is prominently displayed in the Chicago Children's Museum, stating explicitly that nursing (and pumping!) moms are welcome and free to do what they need to do anywhere in the museum.

Look, this isn't rocket science. In December of 2009 I wrote a post where I laid out exactly how we could avoid women being harassed while nursing in public. It included the simple steps of a window cling, staff training and for places with the budget, a nursing room for moms who choose to use it.

I'm so thrilled to see that Maine is encouraging businesses to be proactive. How do we get this going in every state? Are any state breastfeeding coalitions working on anything similar?

Never want to miss an update of the Blacktating Blog? Subscribe here. Follow me on Twitter- I'm @Blacktating

blog comments powered by Disqus
Related Posts with Thumbnails