Recent attempts by the United States delegation to the World Health Assembly, lead by HHS Secretary Alex Azar, to weaken a resolution that encourages breastfeeding worldwide are immensely disappointing.
While the Midwives' Association of Washington State fully supports families who cannot or choose not to breastfeed, we cannot ignore decades of research demonstrating the benefits of breastfeeding. We are distressed to see representatives of this administration prioritizing corporate interests over the well-being of children and families, and grateful to the advocates and delegates from other nations who persisted and succeeded in approving this resolution to promote, protect, and support breastfeeding.
The President's subsequent suggestion that the resolution would disadvantage families living with malnutrition and poverty is misguided and untruthful. In fact, malnourished mothers can often produce healthy breast milk, and breastfeeding is ideal for families without the resources to obtain formula or clean water for preparing it safely.
Breastfeeding is healthy, free, and requires no additional equipment or water to prepare. The majority of the world's nations are absolutely correct to encourage it.
For information on the benefits of breastfeeding for families in poor and developing nations, and the devastation caused by introducing formula in the 1970's in such countries, click here -- https://www.nytimes.com/…/breastfeeding-trump-resolution.ht…
For more information on the US efforts at the World Health Assembly, click here:
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Banner photo used with permission.