World Breastfeeding Week focuses on breastfeeding in the workplace |

World Breastfeeding Week focuses on breastfeeding in the workplace

The 23rd annual World Breastfeeding Week, Aug. 1-7, focuses on making breastfeeding work in places of business.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) about 81 percent of mothers breastfed their babies in 2014, but only 29 percent continued to breastfeed until their babies were one year old.

Babies that are breastfed for at least one year are less likely to develop ear infections, respiratory illnesses, diabetes, some childhood cancers and sudden infant death syndrome, when compared to formula-fed infants

Colorado law requires businesses of one or more employees to:

Provide reasonable time for mothers to express milk at work. This can be unpaid OR paid break time and/or meal time.

Make reasonable efforts to provide suitable, private space with an electrical outlet to moms, so they can express milk at work. Toilet stalls are not an acceptable space.

Not discriminate against women for expressing milk in the workplace.

Research shows businesses see a three-to-one return on investment when moms breastfeed their babies. Healthcare costs and employee turnover rates decrease while productivity and loyalty increase. Employees also take less sick days.

A World Breastfeeding Week event is planned for Thursday, Aug. 6, at Colorado Baby, 560 Main St., from 5:30-8:30 p.m. The event will highlight what a breastfeeding-friendly space should look like and Health Department officials will be on site to answer any questions from employers and breastfeeding moms.

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