The Staying Abreast: Weekly Wire e-Newsletter is a compendium of news, actions, and resources considered to be of interest or relevance to the breastfeeding field. The newsletter aims to support the USBC’s mission "To drive collaborative efforts for policy and practices that create a landscape of breastfeeding support across the United States." Included items are submitted for consideration or identified by the USBC e-news team via extensive online review. Whenever possible, the newsletter utilizes language directly from the primary source of an item without additional analysis or edits. In some cases, the USBC offers additional perspectives through the "USBC Insights," media and partner highlights, and the "News & Views" section. Inclusion of an item in the e-newsletter does not imply endorsement or support by the USBC of an item or organization, unless specifically noted.
Story Collector on Utilization of OWH Workplace Resource
The USBC has launched a story collection tool titled, "Help Us Show The Office on Women's Health Why The Supporting Nursing Moms at Work: Employer Solutions Resource Should be Fully Reinstated." The Office on Women's Health has made significant revisions to the Supporting Nursing Moms at Work resource. Critical content from the original resource was not included in the update. We are seeking stories about how this resource has been utilized by the field in order to demonstrate why the original format and content should be restored. We are specifically seeking stories from:
- Breastfeeding employees;
- Employers, managers, and human resources staff;
- Individuals and organizations that provide support and technical assistance to breastfeeding employees and their employers;
- Breastfeeding coalitions, businesses, and organizations that were involved in the development and/or launch of this resource
Special Section on Airport Lactation Accommodations
On Friday, October 5, the President signed the bipartisan Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) reauthorization bill. The bill includes the provisions of the Friendly Airports for Mothers (FAM) Act, requiring all large and medium hub airports to provide a private, non-bathroom space in each terminal for mothers to express breast milk. The space must be accessible to persons with disabilities, available in each terminal building after the security checkpoint, and include a place to sit, a table or other flat surface, and an electrical outlet. FAA reauthorization also requires airports to provide a baby changing table in one men's and one women's restroom in each passenger terminal building.
USBC Insights: Thank you to the many organizations and individuals who have raised their voices in support of these provisions! Together, we have advocated for the FAM Act's passage in two Congressional sessions, including sending more than 1,800 messages to Members of Congress via our individual action tool and delivering thank you letters to the bill's Congressional sponsors signed by 43 national organizations and 31 state/local organizations. Combined with passage of the BABES act last session, which requires the Transportation Security Administration to provide ongoing training on TSA Special Procedures related to breast milk, formula, and infant feeding equipment, these new provisions help ensure that all lactating travelers have a smooth and supported experience in airports. Breastfeeding in public is protected in all 50 states and families are encouraged to nurse wherever and whenever they are comfortable. These lactation accommodation provisions ensure that those who need or prefer a private space have access to one.
Resources from the field include:
- Duckworth Press Release: "Senate Passes Duckworth Proposals To Help Nursing Mothers, Protect Passengers With Disabilities & Make Air Travel Safer"
- Knight Press Release: "Friendly Airports for Mothers Act Signed Into Law"
Media highlights include:
- USA Today: "Nursing rooms for breastfeeding moms now required at all major airports"
- Yahoo! Lifestyle:
Children's Health Outcomes Data, summarized from HRSA
The Health Resources and Services Administration has released the "2017 National Survey of Children's Health" data from nearly 21,000 households across the U.S. The 2016 and 2017 data can be combined to provide a nationally-representative sample of over 70,000 children. The survey found that in 2016-2017, 76 percent of infants up to one year old were placed to sleep on their backs most of the time. This voluntary survey was funded and directed by HRSA's Maternal and Child Health Bureau and provides annual national- and state-level estimates of key measures of child health and well-being. Since it began in 2003, the HRSA National Survey of Children's Health has informed HRSA's Maternal and Child Health Services Title V Block Grant national performance and outcome measures, as well as HHS's Healthy People objectives. HRSA works with the U.S. Census Bureau to conduct the survey, oversee sampling, and produce a final data set for public use.
USBC Insights: Breastfeeding is a proven primary prevention strategy, building a foundation for life-long health and wellness, including positively impacting children's health outcomes.
Inspector General Report on Zero Tolerance Policy, summarized from OIG
The Office of Inspector General has released a report titled, "Special Review - Initial Observations Regarding Family Separation Issues Under the Zero Tolerance Policy." The OIG's observations indicate that the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) was not fully prepared to implement the Zero Tolerance Policy, or to deal with certain effects of the policy following implementation. For instance, while the Government encouraged all asylum seekers to come to ports of entry to make their asylum claims, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) managed the flow of people who could enter at those ports of entry through metering, which may have led to additional illegal border crossings. Additionally, CBP held alien* children separated under the policy for long periods in facilities intended solely for short-term detention. The OIG team also observed that a lack of a fully integrated Federal immigration information technology system made it difficult for DHS to reliably track separated parents and children, raising questions about the Government's ability to accurately report on separations and subsequent reunifications. Finally, inconsistencies in the information provided to alien parents resulted in some parents not understanding that their children would be separated from them, and made communicating with their children after separation difficult.
USBC Insights: The USBC does not condone the use of the word "alien" to describe people immigrating to the US. This word is included solely because it was in the official report provided by OIG.
MOMMIES Act Introduced, summarized from Congress
Senator Cory Booker has introduced the MOMMIES (Maximizing Outcomes for Moms through Medicaid Improvement and Enhancement of Services) Act. The bill would enhance coverage for pregnant women covered by Medicaid--which covers nearly half of all births in the United States-- by extending coverage for many women to a full year after childbirth, increasing access to primary care providers and women's health providers, establishing a maternity care home demonstration project, and taking action to expand access to doula care. Read the press release.
BELA Community Project Awards Announced, summarized from HCO
HealthConnect One has announced the 2018-2019 Community Project Awards made through their Birth Equity Leadership Academy and supported by the W.K. Kellogg Foundation. The Community Project Awards provide financial assistance and technical support for nine BELA community leaders' initiatives and projects.
Breastfeeding Webinar, summarized from NWA
Join the National WIC Association on Thursday, October 18, at 3 p.m. ET for a webinar titled, "Helping Mothers Achieve Personal Breastfeeding Goals." The webinar will provide attendees with evidence-based strategies to help women reach their personal breastfeeding goals. Dr. Spatz will share her research and clinical experience of the past 23 years.
New Toolkit for OB/Gyn Providers on Postpartum Care, summarized from ACOG
The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists has released the ACOG Postpartum Toolkit. The toolkit includes resources on key components of Fourth Trimester care such as long-term weight management, pregnancy complications, reproductive life-planning, a sample postpartum checklist for patients, as well as reimbursement guidance.
Public Health Advocacy Resources, summarized from APHA
The American Public Health Association has launched "Public Health on the Ballot," a set of resources that can help public health advocates find out where their candidates stand on critical public health issues. The resources include a list of public health issues, a template for writing an op-ed about public health, and instructions for attending a town hall or reaching out to a candidate to discuss public health issues.
Action Tool Thanking Congressional Supporters of LHHS Spending Bill, summarized from NACCHO
The National Association of County and City Health Officials has launched an online action tool for individuals to thank their Members of Congress for voting yes on the FY2019 Departments of Defense and Labor, Health & Human Services and Education spending bill. The thank you message includes descriptions of the importance of funding public health programs to ensure the health and safety of millions of Americans.
USBC Insights: As reported in the October 5 issue of the Weekly Wire, the LHHS bill included $8 million for the Hospitals Promoting Breastfeeding program.
Labor Standards Enforcement Series Resources, summarized from CLASP
The Center for Law and Social Policy has released a series of blog posts, briefs, and archived webinars titled "Labor Standards Enforcement". The series highlights practices and ideas for implementing and enforcing labor standards. The briefs and corresponding webinars each provide examples of how to successfully leverage partnerships between agencies, community-based organizations, and the private bar as well as insights for advocates seeking to improve the legislative tools available to enforce laws.
USBC Insights: Federal and state labor standards provide protections from discrimination and/or require lactation accommodations for employees who need them. See the Online Guide: What You Need to Know About the "Break Time for Nursing Mothers" Law for additional information. Information on state level protections are included in the webpage on "What if your state already has a law?" Ask your Senators and Representative to expand protections for breastfeeding employees with our easy action tool, "Tell Congress to Support ALL Breastfeeding & Working Moms!"
News from the Field
Social Media Strategies Webinar, summarized from SOPHE
Join the Society for Public Health Education on Thursday, October 18, from 1-2 p.m. ET for a webinar titled "#NHEW2018 How to Use Social Media to Promote Public Health Messages." Webinar presenters will discuss how to plan and execute a social media campaign to increase the reach of public health messages.
Breastfeeding Accessories Market Trends Report, summarized from Grand View Research
Grand View Research has published a report entitled "Breastfeeding Accessories Market Size, Share & Trends Analysis Report By Product (Nipple Care Products, Breast Shells, Breast Pads, Breastmilk Storage & Feeding), By Region, And Segment Forecasts, 2018 - 2025." The report includes background on breastfeeding accessories, as well as product and regional insights. The global breastfeeding accessories market size was valued at USD 1.2 billion in 2016 and is estimated to expand at a Compound Annual Growth Rate of 7.9% during the forecast period.
Impact of Federal Transfers on State-Level Infant Mortality Rates, summarized from BMJ Open
BMJ Open has published an article titled, "Research Impact of federal transfers upon US infant mortality rates: a secondary analysis using a fixed effects regression approach." The article features the results of a study that used a fixed effects regression model to estimate the impact of federal transfers on state-level infant mortality rates during the years of 2004–2013. Programs that are funded by a combination of federal and state funds and are impacted by federal transfers include Medicaid, the Children's Health Insurance Program, the Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program, Temporary Assistance for Needy Families, the Healthy Start Program and the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children. After controlling for differences across states, the researchers found that increases in per capita federal transfers are significantly associated with lower infant, neonatal and postneonatal mortality rates, and they conclude that benefits should be carefully considered when state officials are deciding whether to accept or reject federal funds.
Collective Impact Connection
Community Change Webinar, summarized from Tamarack
Tamarack Institute has announced that a pre-recorded webinar titled, "Global Perspectives on Community Change" will be released on Tuesday, October 30. Speakers will reflect on 25 years of collective wisdom in community change from Canada to New Zealand. Based on their experiences, you'll hear about some of the most important shifts in the community change landscape and what that means for your own initiatives. Speakers will also provide insight into challenges, themes, and principles that they believe will affect the next decade of community change work. Complete the form to receive a recording of the webinar when it is released later this month.
News & Views
HealthConnect One blog: "The Growth of Licensure in Health Adjacent Fields Reduces Access to Care"
Voices for Human Needs (CHN blog): "CHN: Farm Bill Expires as Negotiations Continue"