Breastfeeding Welcome Scheme launches in Hackney
A scheme developed to make it easier for mums to know where they will be made especially welcome to breastfeed has been launched in Hackney.
NHS North East London and City and the council jointly commissioned the Breastfeeding Welcome Scheme following a survey which found many women in Hackney are not comfortable breastfeeding in public, and this was a contributing factor in women switching from breast to bottle feeding.
Breastfed babies are less likely to suffer from gastro-enteritis, chest, ear and urinary infections, childhood diabetes asthma, eczema and obesity than babies who are formula fed.
Under the Equality Act, passed in April 2010, mums cannot be discriminated against, asked to leave a venue or treated unfavourably because they are breastfeeding when out and about in England and Wales.
Sherry Bevan, volunteer at the National Childbirth Trust parenting charity, which is co-ordinating the scheme, said: “It is fantastic that mums have the right to breastfeed when they’re out without worrying.
“However surveys have shown that two in three breastfeeding mums have faced unsupportive comments or behaviour - seeing the new Breastfeeding Welcome sticker in a cafe or shop window will be a real boost to a mother’s confidence to breastfeed when out and about.”
To find out which venues have signed up see www.breastfeedingwelcomescheme.org.uk