If you take a look at the success rate of breastfeeding in our country, you can certainly see why programs like WIC, Women, Infants, and Children which focuses on healthy choices in food, and nutrition, needs funding to support breastfeeding mothers.
In fact the low income women who have the option of WIC in most cares are more likely to give up breastfeeding because they know they will have the option of free formula to feed their infant. But unfortunately for women in this country, Virginia Foxx, a republican representative from North Carolina is less than educated on the need for breastfeeding support in The United States.
“All this money is being spent on salaries, benefits and cell phones for a program the federal government has no business doing,” Foxx said on the during Floor debates on Wednesday.
National WIC Association president and CEO Douglas Greenaway said Foxx’s staff advised that “women have been doing this for millions of years and shouldn’t need any help.” But WIC estimates that women who attend its breast-feeding support groups are twice as likely to plan to breastfeed as those who do not.
This is something I take issue with!
Yes, women have breastfed since the beginning of time, but there were not thousands of road blocks, including marketing campaigns by large makers of substitute food for babies trying to gain their business, and profit of the failure of these breastfeeding relationships.
We have all heard of booby traps! Free formula samples, coupons, breastfeeding support hot lines sponsored by formula companies… You know how it goes.
Any way to get to what this rep said… while women may have been breastfeeding since the beginning of time, it certainly is not considered the norm today, and most women are done with breastfeeding between 1-3 months after their baby is born, although the current recommendations say babies should be breastfed until they are at least a year old. With exclusive breastfeeding (nothing else) till 6 months of age.
According to a recent study by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, three out of four new mothers now starts out breast-feeding, but rates of breast-feeding at three and six months remained “stagnant and low” in 2010, and hospital practices and policies that interfere with breast-feeding remain common.
Rep. Foxx’s Breastfeeding Peer Counseling Amendment was defeated with a vote of 119 to 306 Wednesday afternoon. Greenaway said he couldn’t estimate exactly how many women would have been affected by the loss of the breastfeeding program, but he knew the cuts would have had a great impact.
Thankfully this was shut down, but I think a message needs to be sent to Rep. Foxx about the true need for breastfeeding peer counseling in our country!