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HB 1706 strengthens the right to breastfeed law

posted on Feb 26, 2013 in Central Texas News, HMHB News, Mother-Friendly Legislation, News, Statewide News, Texas by
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Show your support for this legislation that increases public health and awareness.

Thank you to Representative Farrar for introducing amendments to the current right to breastfeed legislation.  Under our current legislation, even though it is strongly worded, we continue to receive reports of discrimination year after year.  Mothers report being accosted at the park, in restaurants, department stores, and most recently at AISD.  For many moms it is very embarrassing to attempt to breastfeed in public especially in the first months.  Many moms report that they are so afraid someone will say something negative that they pump milk in order to feed their baby if he\she gets hungry when they are out.  Many problems occur when this fear is fostered.  First, a mothers ability to make milk for her baby is very fragile.  If she does not take milk from the breast each time that the baby eats, she is telling her body that she doesn’t need to make that milk.  Her body responds through either severe engorgement which can lead to infection, loss of milk production, or both.  No mother should be asked to put her health or her baby’s health at risk because it might make someone else uncomfortable to see an infant eat.  Second and just as important, when more women are giving bottles we are teaching the next generation that babies should eat processed foods from a bottle instead of human milk from their mother.  Both consequences are dangerous not just to moms and babies now but generations to come.

The language in this bill that will fulfill the goal that HMHB has had for many years in educating businesses of the right of mothers to feed their children and establishing recourse if that right is abridged.

The bill adds to sec. 165.001: “The legislature intends that all persons be informed of the rights of breast-feeding mother and child and be prohibited from interfering with those rights.”

it adds important language to sec. 165.002 as well (underlined):  “A mother is entitled to breast-feed her baby in any location in which the mother is otherwise authorized to be.  A mother’s authority to be in a location may not be revoked for the sole reason that she begins to breast-feed.

b. A person may not interfere with or restrict the right of  a mother to breast-feed in accordance with this section.

HB 1706 also instructs the comptroller to notify businesses of the current law which has been Texas law since 1995 and ensures the right of civil complaints if that right is denied.  Please tell Representative Farrar thank you for her contribution to healthy moms and babies all across Texas and let your representative know that you want them to co sponsor this bill.

Who represents me?

Full language and instructions on how to follow this bill here.

 

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