Preview of Surgeon General’s Call to Action

It’s a big day for the breastfeeding community.  The Surgeon General, Dr. Regina Benjamin, will be issuing her Call to Action on Breastfeeding, and LLL of SLC has a meeting tonight.

from the United States Breastfeeding Committee press release:

The United States Breastfeeding Committee (USBC) applauds the Call to Action, which is based on the latest evidence about the health, psychosocial, economic, and environmental effects of breastfeeding. The document includes action steps and implementation strategies for six major sectors of society:

  • Mothers and their Families: emphasizes the need to educate and inform families about the importance of breastfeeding, and provide the ongoing support mothers need to continue.
  • Communities: calls upon the entire community to support breastfeeding mothers, including the provision of peer counseling support, promotion of breastfeeding through community-based organizations and traditional and new media venues, and the removal of commercial barriers to breastfeeding.
  • Health Care: urges the health care system to adopt evidence-based practices as outlined in the Baby-Friendly Hospital Initiative, provide health professional education and training, ensure access to skilled, professional lactation care services, and increase availability of banked donor milk.
  • Employment: calls for paid maternity leave and worksite and child care accommodations that support women when they return to work.
  • Research and Surveillance: emphasizes the need for additional research, especially regarding the most effective ways to address disparities and measure the economic impact of breastfeeding, and calls for a national monitoring system.
  • Public Health Infrastructure: calls for enhanced national leadership, including creation of a federal interagency work group, and increasing the capacity of the United States Breastfeeding Committee and affiliated state coalitions.

According to USBC Chair Robin Stanton, “The Surgeon General’s Call to Action to Support Breastfeeding truly paints the landscape of breastfeeding support in the United States, demonstrating a society-wide approach to removing the barriers that make it difficult for many women to succeed. The United States Breastfeeding Committee urges all Americans to be proactive in using these action steps as a springboard to extend support so that mothers throughout the country get the care, help, and encouragement they deserve. USBC looks forward to partnering with both public and private entities on implementation of the action steps.”

How does La Leche League fit? As a volunteer-run organization dedicated to helping mothers with breastfeeding information and support, LLL is one of the ‘private entities’ the Surgeon General is calling upon to continue enhancing the breastfeeding community.  We provide information to mothers, families, healthcare workers, employers, and anyone else who asks.  LLL meetings and interactions are always free.

On that note, don’t forget our Evening Series Meeting tonight, 7pm @ LDS Hospital Amicus Board Room.

 

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