Lauga launches breastfeeding resources to protect mothers
A NEW range of resources to create awareness about the rights of breastfeeding women and children was launched yesterday by new mother Keppel MP Brittany Lauga.
The resources include a fact sheet advising parents how to negotiate their way back to work while continuing to breastfeed their children and a 'know your rights' card.
Mrs Lauga said the card was "a practical tool for women to assert their right to breastfeed by either showing someone the card or reading the quotes on the card with the confidence that they have the authority from the Anti-Discrimination Commission Queensland and the Australian Breastfeeding Association”.
In Australia, the Commonwealth Government and all state and territory governments have introduced laws to protect mothers from discrimination and harassment on the basis of breastfeeding.
Under Australian law, mothers must not be asked to stop breastfeeding in public places and employers must make reasonable accommodation for breastfeeding employees.
"As a new mum to my daughter Odette, I am very aware of the issues surrounding breastfeeding mums and some of the barriers we face,” MrsLauga said.
"The national breastfeeding strategy outlines that although breastfeeding in public is protected in Australia, many mothers perceive or experience a cultural environment that is unsupportive of this and this can be a deterrent to breastfeeding.
"I hope these resources empower breastfeeding women to be confident to know their rights at work and in public. My daughter Odette continues to be breastfed and I have found it difficult, like many breastfeeding mums, to juggle work, expressing and breastfeeding,” said Mrs Lauga.
The Australian National Breastfeeding Strategy found returning to work was one of the greatest barriers to women continuing to breastfeed.
"We should encourage women returning to work to continue on their breastfeeding journey by making it as easy as possible to transition back into the workplace,” Mrs Lauga said.