It’s Time To Normalize Breastfeeding

Celebrate World Breastfeeding Week August 1-7. Advocate for supportive policies benefiting breastfeeding, maternal and infant health, and families.

With a 10-year time span between my 4th and 5th child, I found breastfeeding was far more accepted publicly than before. Organizations online made finding information, supplies, and most importantly fellowship so much easier than 10 years ago! More new mothers are returning breastfeeding. To be an advocate for breastfeeding we must support mothers and their partners.

The law is on your side mama! Among several laws, it is a California State Law (Cal. Civil Code § 43.3) since 1988 that “a mother may breastfeed her child in any location, public or private.”

Currently, there are several bills that support breastfeeding, maternal and infant health, and families. The California WIC Association has a Bill Monitor Report (7/18/19) listing the bills under review which need our support. An interesting bill is the New Infants At Work Program: CA State Agencies. This would “allow an employee of the agency who is a new parent or caregiver to an infant to bring the infant to the workplace.” That would be amazing to be able to bring your baby to work. I can image babywearing would be perfect for this!

California’s Governor, Gavin Newsom, recently approved the fiscal budget which funds an additional 2 weeks, for a total of 8 weeks, paid parental leave to bond with a newborn. This goes into effect on July 1, 2020. Originally, Governor Newsom had campaigned for a full 6 month leave. Though it’s not approved now, he has proposed “a task force to develop a plan that would get California to a full six months of paid leave by the 2021-22 fiscal year.” (SF Chronicle) Let’s hold him to this!

Mother nursing her baby while sitting up in bed. Four other children are watching TV in another bed.
Relaxing at our hotel in San Diego, CA over Thanksgiving break 2015. My youngest daughter had a soccer tournament there.
Woman sitting on a bench breastfeeding wearing a cover up.
Nursing Titus at Fort Mason, San Francisco, CA 2015. We, along with my oldest daughter were visiting The Mexican Museum.
Just one of those times when all is right with the world.

Three ways you can #normalizebreastfeeding

  • Cuanentena. It’s a Mexican tradition to have a period of 30 days to solely focus on our newborns. I so cherished this time! This time can be crucial to establish breastfeeding as well as healing. Support a new mama in these ways.
  • Support breastfeeding organizations. Connect locally with The Breastfeeding Coalition of San Joaquin County on Facebook using @BreastfeedSJC. Connect nationally with La Leche League USA on Facebook and Twitter using @LaLecheLeagueUSA. Connect with our own community through groups like Latina Breastfeeding Coalition.
  • Products and services. There are so many amazing products out there in just 10 years what a difference! I especially appreciated an electric breast pump and learning how to wrap my baby.

Celebrate your accomplishment

Whether it is for 1 month or 1 year of breastfeeding, celebrate yourself and the nursing mothers you know during World Breastfeeding Week this August!

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