The New Mexico
BREASTFEEDING WELCOME HERE!
TO OUR FRIENDS WHO OWN BUSINESSES
Did you know that New Mexico has a law that protects the rights
of breast-feeding women to nurse any place in public? That's not
surprising when you consider that women who breastfeed are
giving their babies the best nourishment possible--one that reduces
their child's chances of allergies, ear infections, diabetes, and some
cancers, just to name a few.
What does this mean for your business or restaurant? You can
reach out to your breastfeeding customers by offering them a
welcoming and supportive environment in which to shop
or dine --and take time out to nurse. Here are a few
tips to make your premises "breastfeeding friendly."
Place a "Breastfeeding Welcome Here" decal in your window. Mothers will be drawn into your business knowing that they can nurse comfortably there, and will be impressed by your commitment to mother and baby health and wellbeing.
Educate yourself and your employees about breastfeeding. Some people are uncomfortable at what can be an unfamiliar sight of a woman nursing her baby or young child. You should know, however, that it is absolutely normal (and what nature intended) for an infant or toddler to nurse. In reality, it is rare to see any more than a little of the mother's skin when she breastfeeds, but remember, this is what breasts were made for. Just look away if you feel uncomfortable, but never suggest that a mother cover herself or that she nurse out-of-sight of other customers or employees. The more we see breastfeeding mothers, the more comfortable we will all be with them.
Go the extra mile to make a breastfeeding mom comfortable. If you are a restauranteur, make sure she has water at her table (a nursing mom is a thirsty mom). If you encounter other patrons who are uncomfortable at the sight of a mother breastfeeding, remember: this is not the breastfeeding mother's problem. Suggest that the patron take a seat that faces away from the mother, or offer to reseat them in another part of the restaurant. Just as they have a right to eat in peace, so do babies!
In your business you may wish to have a chair, or even a rocking chair, available in a quiet corner, and have drinking water on hand as well. Your nursing customers will be relieved to know they can take a break from shopping to nurse peacefully and comfortably.
These are just a few ideas to make your business welcoming to nursing mothers . We are available to provide further education, information, or ideas. Call us for your "Breastfeeding Welcome Here" window decal.
The New Mexico Breastfeeding Task Force
Contact Cindy at 505.933.9163 or firstname.lastname@example.org
A Breastfeeding Community is a
USE OF A BREAST PUMP IN THE WORKPLACE: NMSA 1978, Section 28-20-2 (amended 2007) requires employers to provide flexible break time, and a clean, private space, not a bathroom, in order to foster the ability of a nursing mother who is an employee to use a breast pump in the workplace
BREASTFEEDING IN PUBLIC PLACES: NMSA 1978, Section 28-20-1 (1999) makes it legal for a mother to "breastfeed her child in any location, public or private, where the mother is otherwise authorized to be present."
New Mexico Laws
The University of New Mexico School of Law Clinical Law Program is nationally recognized and sponsors The Medical Legal Alliance. The Medical Legal Alliance is a program dedicated to "meeting the non-biological health care needs of children." The program furnishes legal representation to children/families where the health of the child is impacted by extenuating legal issues. Professors April Land and Mike Norwood are in charge of the Alliance and have indicated an interest in addressing legal issues that might be raised by New Mexico's Breastfeeding Laws. If you have encountered problems with businesses or employers, the Task Force encourages you to call Victoria at 505-277-0903 at the clinic.
Door Hanger designed by Southern NM Task Force
The Health Resources and Services Administration of The US Department of Health and Human Services has available a "Business Case for Breastfeeding Kit" which may be obtained by calling 1-888-275-4772
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