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Initiative seeks to break down breast-feeding barriers

Aug. 28, 2014, 10:04 AM

Showing off the new ‘Breastfeeding Welcomed Here’ window stickers that will be displayed at Vanderbilt are Luke Gregory, center, and Newborn Nursery and Lactation staff members, from left, Cathy Marler, Lauren Presley, Betty McDaniel, Carol Huber, Grace Ibine, Michelle McPherson and Betsy Crabtree.

Breast-feeding is welcomed at Vanderbilt University Medical Center and Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt.

In an ongoing effort to support and promote breast-feeding, Vanderbilt has signed on to a statewide breast-feeding initiative, launched by the Tennessee Department of Health and the Tennessee Breastfeeding Coalition.

The campaign, named “Breastfeeding Welcomed Here,” seeks to encourage more women to breast-feed their babies and breast-feed for a longer duration by making the community friendlier to breast-feeding families.

A hallmark window decal for the campaign, featuring the international symbol for breast-feeding, is placed in the windows of businesses and organizations that take the pledge.

The logo of a woman holding a baby has two goals: to alert moms to a public location where they can breast-feed comfortably; and to promote the idea that breast-feeding is normal, accepted and welcomed.

In Nashville alone, more than 80 locations have taken the pledge.

Vanderbilt’s window clings also use the international symbol but are featured in black and gold colors.

“The law in Tennessee allows a mom to breast-feed her child in any public place. Breastfeeding Welcomed Here is an initiative that recognizes businesses that have taken a pledge to train their staff on this law and support breast-feeding,” said Anna Morad, M.D., director of the Newborn Nursery.

“The logo and window cling give a visual reminder to breast-feeding moms that they are welcomed and helps to normalize nursing in public places.”

For more information about Breastfeeding Welcomed Here or to find lactation spaces around Vanderbilt’s campus visit the Margaret Cuninggim Women’s Center web page.

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