The calendar has flipped to August and you know what that means - it is time to celebrate National Breastfeeding Month!!
It is time to celebrate the first time you put baby to the breast or secured attachment to a supplementer on your chest. To celebrate the first time baby gave you that milky smile. And of course we have to celebrate that challenge that you overcame - whether it was sore nipples, a difficult latch, or the baby who never seemed to unlatch!
Each and every one of those moments deserves celebrating!
But in the celebration we must take a moment to lift up and support our fellow parents who have struggled to meet their breastfeeding goals. We know that right now while 4 out of 5 U.S. mothers start out breastfeeding, less than half are still breastfeeding at 6 months postpartum. We know that many parents want to breastfeed or chestfeed, but face challenge after challenge in trying to meet their goals.
The good news is there is a solution! There are public policies that can help break down these barriers and empower parents to meet their breastfeeding/chestfeeding goals.
Take these #5Actions this week to support breastfeeding families!
--Tina, Namatie, Sara, Elyssa, Kristin, Sue Anne, Jordan, and the rest of the MomsRising / MamásConPoder Team
Let's bring mothers out of the bathroom stalls and into the pumping rooms they deserve!
Right now 60% of working moms do not have adequate break time or a private space to pump in the workplace. In fact many moms end up pumping in airplane bathrooms, parked cars, utility closets, and in cubicles with absolutely no privacy. These are just some of the places that breastfeeding moms who work outside the home have had to pump breastmilk because they didn’t have access to anything better at work.
QUICK SIGNATURE: I Scream, You Scream, We All Scream for Paid Leave
Nothing says summer like an ice cream sandwich and there’s nothing more American than being in the sandwich generation. Right now 1 in 4 mothers return to work within 10 days of giving birth and many of them find themselves in the sandwich generation; meaning that sometimes they’re pressed between caring for a critically ill aging parent and welcoming a new child simultaneously. Through it all, having access to paid family and medical leave is vital.
This summer we have a chance to pass paid family and medical leave and bring relief to sandwich generation families struggling with being there when a new child arrives or in a moment of critical illness for an older adult or yourself. Paid family and medical leave is critical for the economic security and well being of our families. It is key to bettering businesses and our economy and will lead to long term health and stability for our nation. Let’s pass paid leave this summer.
Tell the U.S. Senate: Breastfeeding parents need the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act!
Nobody should have to choose between their paycheck and a healthy pregnancy, but when pregnant workers are denied reasonable accommodations on the job — like a cashier’s stool or extra bathroom breaks —they are often forced to make this impossible choice. The Pregnant Workers Fairness Act (S. 1486) would make it unmistakable: employers must provide reasonable accommodations to pregnant workers who need them to stay safe at work. Due to the racist and sexist systemic forces of oppression in our labor economy that work in tandem to unfairly funnel many women of color into physically demanding jobs, this legislation will help to ensure that the workplace is a safe and healthy environment for Black moms and so many other pregnant workers. The U.S House of Representatives passed this bill in May. Let’s take action together to get it across the finish line!
Learn about the new Child Tax Credit benefits breastfeeding/chestfeeding families & take action!
We have great news! Starting July 15th, the newly expanded Child Tax Credit started rolling out. Meaning families around the country started getting monthly checks of up to $300/child. The Child Tax Credit has now been expanded to reach more families--even if you've made little to no income in the past year. We have created a website to help answer all your questions about the new Child Tax Credit. (It’s also available here in Spanish).
But unless Congress takes immediate action, the newly expanded Child Tax Credit will expire at the end of the year. You and I both know that raising kids is expensive and that expense doesn’t stop just because the year has ended. Which is why we need YOU to take action today!
Send a letter to the editor today to your local paper calling on Congress to make the expansion of the Child Tax Credit permanent. (Don’t worry—our cool tool makes it super easy for you to submit a letter to your local paper. We’ll walk you through all the steps and even supply sample language!)
Urge Congress to Support Funding for Breastfeeding & Chestfeeding Families!
One significant barrier to meeting breastfeeding goals is the lack of lactation support and education. Fully funding programs that support breastfeeding families in hospitals, workplaces and the community will help empower breastfeeding/chestfeeding parents.