BREASTFEEDING FRIENDLY EMPLOYER AWARD
Purpose of NH Breastfeeding Friendly Employer Award
The New Hampshire Breastfeeding Task Force aims to promote, protect, and support breastfeeding. Exclusive breastfeeding for at least 6 months after birth is optimal for the health of a mother and her infant. The Task Force would like to recognize employers that support breastfeeding in their workplaces.
Although certain accommodations for nursing mothers are required per the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, the Task Force is seeking employers who are establishing and maintaining comprehensive, high-quality lactation support for their employees. Employers that have or are working toward, paid maternity leave for all employed mothers, flex-time schedules, job-sharing, work-from-home, and on-site child care, will be recognized for these family-centered policies.
Applications are due April 30 of each year and awards will be made at the annual Breastfeeding Task Force Conference later that Spring, usually May or June.
Honorable Mention for employers who meet Affordable Care Act criteria of:
- A written breastfeeding policy that is provided to all employees
- Provide a room with a lockable door (not a bathroom/toilet)
- A comfortable chair for pumping or nursing baby
- Flexible (paid or unpaid) breaks of at least 15-20 minutes every 2-3 hours and a lunch break
New Hampshire Award for employers who provide all the above and:
- Educational breastfeeding materials for all expectant parents
- Lactation room, or designated room with a lock on the door
- Refrigerator nearby for milk storage
- Nearby sink for washing up
- Electrical outlet
- Extra credit: radio/CD player, telephone, breastfeeding artwork
Awards will be made at the annual Task Force conference and publicized through local and state press releases and on the Task Force website.
How to Apply
Complete the self-assessment application below and email a copy to firstname.lastname@example.org or U.S. mail a copy to:
The recommendations of the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) are clear and backed by extensive research
The AAP recommends exclusive breastfeeding for about 6 months, with continuation of breastfeeding for 1 year or longer as mutually desired by mother and infant, a recommendation concurred to by the WHO (World Health Organization) and the Institute of Medicine. Support for this recommendation of exclusive breastfeeding is found in the differences in health outcomes of infants breastfed exclusively for 4 vs 6 months, for gastrointestinal disease, otitis media, respiratory illnesses, and atopic disease, as well as differences in maternal outcomes of delayed menses and postpartum weight loss.
The common cold in an infant causes parents to take sick leave
The American Academy of Pediatrics has stated: "The risk of hospitalization for lower respiratory tract infections in the first year is reduced 72% if infants breastfed exclusively for more than 4 months. Serious colds and ear and throat infections were reduced by 63% in infants who exclusively breastfed for 6 months."
According to the AAP, the longer the infant exclusively breastfeeds (no use of formula supplements) the better!
"Infants who exclusively breastfed for 4 to 6 months had a fourfold decrease in the risk of pneumonia compared with infants who exclusively breastfed for more than 6 months". (The longer an infant is fed only breastmilk, the greater the benefits.)
Hospitalization of infants takes parents away from work and adds to healthcare costs
"The severity (duration of hospitalization and oxygen requirements) of respiratory syncytial Virus (RSV) bronchiolitis is reduced by 74%
in infants who breastfed exclusively for 4 months compared with infants who never or only partially breastfed." American Academy of Pediatrics 2011
Ear Infections are not a normal part of infancy
"Any breastfeeding compared with exclusive commercial infant formula feeding will reduce the incidence of otitis media (OM) by 23%. Exclusive breastfeeding for more than 3 months reduces the risk of otitis media by 50%."
American Academy of Pediatrics 2011