5 WAYS EMPLOYERS CAN SUPPORT BREASTFEEDING EMPLOYEES
1. Give them enough maternity leave – with pay. 6 months for exclusive breastfeeding should be the minimum. It gets better when it’s longer. A woman who gets a paid maternity leave is more likely to return to work.
2. Create a nursery. If the workplace is large enough and the female employees are many, employers should create a space to allow nursing mothers bring their children. The mothers can arrange and pay for a nanny. This will encourage optimal breastfeeding.
3. Give them breastfeeding breaks when they resume. 30 minutes to one hour will go a long way. They can use the time to pump, go (home or to the nursery) and feed their babies, or just relax and bond.
4. Provide a safe space. Clear up a room where mothers can spend their break time without any disturbance. It would be nice to furnish the space with a nice rocking chair, a table, electric plugs and a refrigerator for storing expressed milk.
5. Keep their job flexible for the first year. Lactating women are more likely to quit their jobs in the first year, if they don’t get enough time to care for their babies. Those who have the option of working from home, or taking flexible hours, are more likely to thrive better in their careers.
Can you share more tips on how to encourage breastfeeding in the workplace?