When employers help make it easy for families to keep breastfeeding, mothers feel better supported and are more likely to reach their breastfeeding goals. Lorain County Public Health helps employers and community-based locations create programs, policies, and environmental supports that encourage healthy behaviors like breastfeeding.
To help local mothers and employers build breastfeeding support, Lorain County Public Health designed a Breastfeeding Support in the Workplace guide with local partners, working moms, and businesses. It includes policy templates, talking points, and recommendations to help new mothers feel better supported while breastfeeding or pumping at work.
Lorain County Public Health recently partnered with Kendal at Oberlin and CoWork Oberlin to develop new policies and to set up lactation rooms that support breastfeeding women. Both Kendal and CoWork Oberlin now have lactation support policies and private rooms for breastfeeding women to use. Grants covered the costs of refrigerators for breastmilk storage, and comfortable seating.
These recent projects inspired other companies to proactively support working women. In fact, the coworking community model for CoWork Oberlin, LaunchHouse now strongly recommends that their other locations in Northeast Ohio include lactation rooms.
The Breastfeeding Support in the Workplace guide and improvements at local workplaces were done in-part through Lorain County Public Health’s Creating Healthy Communities (CHC) program. The health department and CHC support these and similar collaborations throughout the county to help communities make the healthy choice the easier choice, and to reduce barriers to living a healthy lifestyle.