Breastfeeding Friendly Campus
At Southern, we recognize the importance of creating a family-friendly environment for students, employees, and the community. Creating such an environment includes providing a supportive and flexible environment for breastfeeding students and employees as they transition back to study or work. While breastfeeding is known to offer health benefits for both infants and mothers, mothers who are nursing their babies often encounter obstacles to continuing the practice once they return to work or school.
For women in the Southern community who are breastfeeding their babies, a new campus-wide initiative will ensure an environment that is offers them support. Southern is now in the process of becoming a “Breastfeeding-Friendly Campus,” a designation given by the Connecticut Breastfeeding Coalition to recognize higher-education worksites that are supporting breastfeeding employees and students. As a result, the university now expects each department to take reasonable measures to accommodate students and employees who wish to breastfeed or express breast milk on campus in accordance with Connecticut State Breastfeeding Laws. Those measures would include volunteer “breastfeeding champions” who can provide mothers with information about what is available to them on campus, as well as expanding the number of spaces around campus that breastfeeding mothers can use.
In August, the School of Health and Human Services officially became a pilot program as a “Breastfeeding-Friendly School,” and now the initiative is branching out to the entire campus, under the leadership of Michele Vancour, professor of public health. While some of the necessary pieces of the program have come together, the university needs more volunteers to serve as champions and more areas to be set aside as lactation spaces.
Southern could become the first higher education institution in the state, and probably the country, to be designated a Breastfeeding-Friendly Campus. We need everyone to embrace the initiative to make it a success. Learn more about the program here.
If you have an interest in serving as a breastfeeding champion or just want to learn more about the initiative and how you can help, contact Michele at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thanks you in advance for your support of this important initiative.