Health Dept. Announces Breastfeeding Friendly Place Awards

Two Public Places & Two Workplaces Lauded for Creating Supportive Environments

PITTSBURGH –To commemorate World Breastfeeding Week, August 1-7, the Allegheny County Health Department today announced the winners of its 17th annual Breastfeeding Friendly Place Awards, which recognize workplaces, public places and other sites away from home that make an extra effort to accommodate breastfeeding mothers.

Honored in the workplace category are H.J. Heinz Company (Heinz 57 Center) in Downtown Pittsburgh and Kids Plus Pediatrics medical office in Squirrel Hill, and in the public place category Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh – Woods Run and retailer E2 Toys2Try in Scott.

“The longer a baby is breastfed the greater the health benefits, yet surveys have found that only 44.3% of babies nationwide and 37.6% in Pennsylvania are breastfed for six months or longer.  Making places outside the home more breastfeeding friendly will encourage women to breastfeed longer and as a result babies and moms will derive greater health benefits,” said Acting Health Director Dr. Ron Voorhees.

Breastfeeding friendly workplaces are also good for business, because breastfed babies are less likely to get sick throughout childhood and that means lower absentee rates for working moms and dads due to a child’s illness.

H.J. Heinz Company has demonstrated a strong commitment to new moms by offering employees a very large lactation area with four private cubicles and a table and chair in each cubicle.  The lactation room also has a mini-refrigerator, microwave for mom’s food, mirror, hand sanitizer and a large lounging chair.

Kids Plus Pediatrics provides three lactation rooms for patients as well as staff and gives employees who breastfeed time to pump whenever necessary, offering comfortable recliner chairs, tables, good lighting and a dressing table very close to the work area.

Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh – Woods Run provides the public with very comfortable chairs, good lighting and a bright cheerful atmosphere with a positive staff attitude toward breastfeeding and acceptance of nursing moms.  There is a designated area for story time where moms can comfortably nurse their babies.

E2 Toys2Try, a retail store in Scott, has staff with a positive attitude toward breastfeeding and a large indoor play area where moms can comfortably sit and nurse their babies while their older children play.

Instituted as the Breastfeeding Friendly Workplace Awards in 1996, the awards were later expanded to include all places offering a supportive attitude and environment that make it easier to breastfeed away from home.

#  #  #