Updated: May 30, 2019
NOTE: This was a private event that was neither sponsored nor sanctioned by JBMDL, the Department of Defense, or any branch of the Armed Forces.
Just in time for #WorldBreastfeedingWeek 2018, the United States can finally say that all 50 states protect a woman's right to breastfeed in public without being discriminated against. While these laws still need to be improved and American women need much more breastfeeding support, this is a huge step forward! While you can read my opinions on these laws over at Little Bear Lactation Blog, I do want to say how excited I am that we are supporting mothers to nurse freely.
Anyway, this exciting step forward is what inspired me to set these photos at the #JBMDL flag circle inside the McGuire gate. Each state and US Territory is represented here.
In celebration of #WorldBreastfeedingWeek and #BreastfeedingAwarenessMonth, I gathered some moms from Joint Base McGuire Dix Lakehurst to help raise money for Mom2MomGlobal, an international #breastfeedingsupport group for military families!
Military families often face unique circumstances that make breastfeeding especially challenging. Active Duty mothers, in particular, deal with a lot of challenges reaching their breastfeeding goals. The military is making strides in supporting these mothers. Each branch has special policies in place to protect Breastfeeding mothers. The Air Force, in particular, has very progressive policies to support mothers. You can learn more about support for Active Duty Breastfeeders at Breastfeeding In Combat Boots. Unfortunately, despite the amazing steps forward, many mothers still face disparities and dare I say, discrimination. Some of the personal stories that have been shared with me privately are heartbreaking. Thankfully, with advocacy and support we are moving forward and taking huge steps toward changing the atmosphere.
Unfortunately, I did not have any Active Duty mothers participate in today's session, so I don't have any challenges or triumph stories to share with you.
Furthermore, Active Duty mothers aren't the only ones in the military community struggling with breastfeeding. Mothers who are civilian dependents also have unique circumstances... While many of these issues do apply to the general public, I ha