Breastfeed LA is dedicated to improving the health and well being of infants and families through education, outreach, and advocacy to promote and support breastfeeding.
BreastfeedLA (formerly known as the Breastfeeding Task Force of Greater Los Angeles) formed in 1994 by a group of dedicated volunteers who wanted to make a difference in the breastfeeding rates in Los Angeles County. BreastfeedLA incorporated as a not-for-profit 501(c)3 corporation in September of 2001.
We have had a busy and productive year working to improve the health and well being of families in LA County through advocacy, education and outreach to promote and support breastfeeding.
Actions in Health Care
- The Baby-Friendly designation was achieved by Harbor-UCLA Medical Center and LAC+USC Medical Center with technical assistance provided by BreastfeedLA. Valley-Care Olive View Medical Center achieved the Baby-Friendly designation in 2011. Now all three county run hospitals are Baby-Friendly!
- The LA BEST Health Care Project engaged with 19 hospitals to provide direct technical assistance to achieve or maintain the Baby-Friendly designation. Six of them are on track to have their Baby-Friendly on-site surveys in 2013.
- The Regional Hospital Breastfeeding Consortium is a popular initiative providing a forum for collaborative learning for hospitals throughout the county. Collaborating with the Department of Public Health, there were 3 meetings convened each month, one in the North, South and East regions of our county. Plans are underway to also address the needs of the hospitals in the West region.
August, 2012, City of Los Angeles' Mayor Villaraigosa dedicates the new Lactation Accommodation Room at City Hall. Found on the 2nd floor of City Hall.
Pictured from R-L: Ursaline Singlton (US DHHS, OWH), Councilwomen Jan Perry, Araceli Campos (President, Commission on the Status of Women), Karen Peters (Executive Director, BreastfeedLA), Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, Dr. Rob Gilchick (County of Los Angeles, DPH), Farrah Parker (Executive Director, Commission on the Status of Women), Councilman Tony Cardenas
Actions in Employment
Workplace Lactation Accommodation Policy and Program adopted and implemented in three of our largest employers, with technical assistance provided by BreastfeedLA.
- We have partnered with the Professionals in Human Resources Association to increase the number of employers with workplace lactation accommodation policy. Baseline data were collected about the knowledge, attitudes and lactation programs.
August 2012: City of Los Angeles Dedicated a lactation room for city employees and citizen use. 2nd floor, City Hall
- Peter Hartman and Nils Bergman are internationally renowned speakers that BreastfeedLA brought to town this year. The important topics of culture, jaundice, disaster preparedness and ethics were also presented in our popular seminar series.
- Hospitals working on achieving the Baby-Friendly designation found our Birth and Beyond Los Angeles (BBLA) and Train the Trainer Workshops prepare them to meet their goal of training all staff to support attachment, bonding and breastfeeding.
Policy and Advocacy
- BreastfeedLA was pleased to support the passage of AB 2386 (Allen) On September 28, 2012 the Governor signed AB 2386 into law. This law provides greater protection to breastfeeding moms in the workplace by amending California Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA), which makes it is unlawful to engage in specified discriminatory practices in employment or housing accommodations on the basis of sex. This bill added breastfeeding or medical conditions related to breastfeeding to the definition of sex for the purposes of the FEHA.
- Pregnancy Disability Regulation: In one of its final acts, the Fair Employment and Housing Commission issued new pregnancy disability regulations in which lactation is now formally connected to pregnancy. The Office of Administrative Law has approved the new regulations, which are now in effect. One of the keys pieces of the new regulation is that the right to a lactation accommodation is included in the section on “notification” by the employer.