Corporate Voices for Working Families believes that workplace lactation programs are good for working families — and good for businesses.

Consider these facts:

  • Mothers with infants are one of the largest and fastest growing segments in the United States workforce — particularly in retail, service and other lower-wage industries.
  • Fifty-six percent of mothers with infants under 1 year of age work. One-third of mothers return to work within 3 months of giving birth, two-thirds within 6 months.
  • The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that all mothers breastfeed their babies exclusively for six months, and keep nursing for 1 year or more.
  • Seventy-five percent of mothers in the United States begin breastfeeding their babies at birth.
  • Less than 20 percent still are exclusively breastfeeding 6 months later.
  • One of the most common reasons mothers cite for early weaning is that they must return to work.

Corporate Voices for Working Families has launched an initiative to help solve this problem facing many working mothers, especially those in hourly and lower-wage positions – the need for breastfeeding support in the workplace. In partnership with Abbott Nutrition, Working Mother Media and a select group of companies, this new program aims to give employers the information and tools they need to reach hourly and lower-wage workers and help establish workplace lactation programs. 

A key component of the initiative – Workplace Lactation Programs: Good for Working Families. Good for Business. TM – is a workplace lactation toolkit that provides instructions, tips and template materials. Important elements of the program include recommendations for employers on how to support employees with breastfed babies, guides for working mothers who breastfeed, and sample promotional materials to alert employees to the resources provided by the program.

Details on the Toolkit to Support Breastfeeding in the Workplace

 Workplace Lactation Programs: Good for Working Families. Good for Business. TM, available on the Corporate Voices for Working Families website at www.cvworkingfamilies.org, is designed to help front-line managers implement lactation programs and educate hourly and lower-wage employees on how they can make a choice in infant nutrition. Material contained in the toolkit is available in both English and Spanish.  The workplace lactation program will be distributed throughout the business community and to healthcare organizations, community groups and government agencies.

 The Workplace Lactation toolkit was developed in consultation with a select group of member companies and healthcare professionals, including:  Ceridian; CVS Caremark; IBM Corporation; ICF International, Inc.; Knowledge Learning Corporation; LifeCare; Marriott International, Inc.; Metropolitan Life Insurance Company; PNC Financial Services Group, Inc.; and The TJX Companies, Inc.

Please download a copy of the toolkit — and share it with others, including employers.