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Publication date:- 2017-09-09

user-generated Headlines and reports on this page = 3 news items.    Page - 2.

Breastfeeding friendly charter mark launched

LIVERPOOL'S Wavertree MP Luciana Berger helped launch the City's new charter mark for shops and businesses that are breast feeding friendly.  Together with her 18 month old daughter Amelie, she joined members of the Council's breast feeding peer support group, Liverpool Bambis and Council leaders for the launch at Wigwam Café in Mossley Hill.  The café is the 1st of 10 firms to be granted the:- 'Breastfeeding Mayoral Quality Mark' after Councillors recently unanimously approved a motion proposing its introduction. Cafes and restaurants and are among those to have signed up to a 10 point plan which includes:-

► Allow breastfeeding in all public areas.

► Making private areas available for feeding where possible.

► Offering mums a free drink of water or tea/coffee.

Promoting support services for breastfeeding.

Each business will receive a certificate and a badge that they can place in their window or door to let customers know they are breast feeding friendly.  Deputy Mayor, Cllr Ann O'Byrne, said:- "The law is clear that mums can breastfeed anywhere, but we know that some are reluctant to do so because they are not sure if there will be objections from staff or customers. Breastfeeding is the most natural thing in the world, and the aim of our Quality Mark is to give them reassurance and certainty that the business they are entering welcomes mums and will do everything they can to ensure they can feed in comfort."

Liverpool is seeing an increase in breastfeeding rates, but still lags behind the national average. A total of 53% of new mums feed naturally, compared to 74% elsewhere, dropping to 32% at 6 to 8 weeks against 44% across the rest of the country.  The City's peer support group for breastfeeding, Liverpool Bambis; who are based at and managed by Wavertree, Childwall and Woolton Children's Centre; has supported 16,000 mums over the last 5 years.

Sarah Todd, Liverpool Bambis Coordinator, said:- "Breast feeding, even a short period of time, gives children the very best start in life. It has numerous health benefits for both mum and baby, which is why we work so hard to support mums to achieve their own breastfeeding goals. We are delighted with the Mayoral Quality Mark as it will have a positive impact on promoting breastfeeding in our City."

Owner Sue Kelbrick said:- "We are delighted to be involved with this initiative. As a child friendly café we understand that the need to feed a little one can come at any time and we do our very best to make sure mums feel at home. We pride ourselves on not only providing a safe and welcoming environment for mums to breastfeed, but also actively encouraging breastfeeding through our weekly Bambis' sessions. No 1 should ever be made to feel uncomfortable doing what is the most natural thing in the world, and we will be displaying the Council's Quality Mark with pride to prove our support for breastfeeding."

The other businesses to be accredited are:- Lunya in Liverpool ONE; Marmalade Skies on Allerton Road, John Lewis café; Little Eatery on Aigburth Road; Leaf on Bold Street, Love thy Neighbour on Bold Street, Café Oro on Smithdown Road and branches of Costa Coffee and Café Nero in the City.

The World Health Organisation (WHO) recommends that mother's breastfeed infants for the 1st 6 months to achieve optimal growth, development and health. The advantages include:-

► Strengthening the physical and emotional bond between mum and baby.

► Protecting the baby from infections and reduces the risk of eczema and diabetes.

► Protecting the mother against ovarian and breast cancers and weak bones in later life.

► Helps the mother return to their pre-pregnancy figure faster.

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