Wiltshire Council urges the community to support mums to breastfeed
With COVID restrictions lifting it is more important than ever for Mums to feel confident to get back out in the community, and this includes being able to breastfeed when they need to. This year, World Breastfeeding Week is focusing on empowering mums to breastfeed when they are out and about, by highlighting the support mums would like to ensure they feel safe and comfortable breastfeeding wherever they are.
Feedback from mums suggests that some stop breastfeeding because they feel uncomfortable doing so in public, even though all mothers have a legal right to breastfeed wherever they like.
The Bath and North East Somerset, Swindon and Wiltshire (BSW) Infant Feeding group have been finding out what support mums feel they need to breastfeed comfortably whilst they are out and about in the community. Local mums have said that small gestures such as a brief warm smile and having a drink and somewhere comfortable to sit is helpful. They also said they would like people to understand that breastfeeding is completely normal but that sometimes it can be hard, and simply being listened to is extremely supportive.
Wiltshire Council is calling on the community to play their part by supporting mums to breastfeed or signing up to the Breastfeeding Welcome Scheme.
Wiltshire is part of the Breastfeeding Welcome Scheme and venues can sign up to this scheme to receive their Breastfeeding Welcome kit. Mums can easily search for venues on Breastfeeding welcome scheme - find a venue by town or postcode or look out for the "You are welcome to breastfeed your baby here" pink and white sticker to find venues which welcome breastfeeding. For businesses, there is little to no cost involved, a great opportunity to make a positive contribution to help children get the best start in life while also boosting customer satisfaction and loyalty.
Conservative Cllr Simon Jacobs, Cabinet Member for Public Health, said:
New mums have experienced many challenges through the COVID-19 pandemic. Now that they are able to get out and about, they don't need any additional stress and pressure. It is important that we all do what we can to make it as easy as possible for mums to breastfeed safely and comfortably in the community, particularly as breastfeeding has so many health benefits for both mum and their child.
The Breastfeeding Welcome Scheme provides a great opportunity for the community to support breastfeeding mums when they are feeding in public. We're proud to be Breastfeeding Welcome at Wiltshire Council venues and we'd love more businesses to join us.
Businesses can sign up to the Breastfeeding Welcome Scheme by:
- Reading through the Breastfeeding Welcome Scheme sample checklist and check they meet the criteria
- Making any changes necessary to fulfil the checklist
- Registering directly online at Breastfeeding welcome scheme Register
- Contacting email@example.com with any questions
For more advice and support on breastfeeding, people should visit Pregnancy, breastfeeding and early parenthood.
People can show their support on social media by using the local campaign #outandaboutBSW when sharing any posts, and following the council's channels where regular posts will be made throughout the week: @WiltshireCouncil on Facebook, @WiltsCouncil on Twitter.