Bromley Primary Care Trust (PCT) is one of the first areas to adopt the new national Breastfeeding Welcome Scheme developed by the Breastfeeding Coalition (BMC) to make it easier for mothers to know where they would be made especially welcome to breastfeed.
New Equality Act
Under the new Equality Act, passed in April 2010, mums cannot be discriminated against, asked to leave a venue or treated unfavourably because they are breastfeeding when out and about in England and Wales. Support from local services can give mums confidence to breastfeed when in public, and give their baby the healthiest possible start in life.
Scheme launched summer 2010
Bromley PCT launched the Breastfeeding Welcome scheme in June 2010, working in collaboration with volunteers from NCT and La Leche League. The scheme provides local cafes, restaurants, leisure centres and other public venues with a free toolkit to let mums know that they are welcome to breastfeed.
Sign up to the scheme
Many businesses and other venues have an open attitude to breastfeeding, but women have no way of knowing this. Becoming breastfeeding welcome and putting up the breastfeeding welcome signs and logos will let them know that they are welcome. It will promote your business or service and you will become part of a nationwide positive health campaign, what’s more it can be free!
Venue owners or managers - receive your free toolkit
The Breastfeeding Welcome Scheme toolkit includes a poster and adhesive window sticker, as well as a free listing at www.breastfeedingwelcomescheme.org.uk. Venues that want to register can email firstname.lastname@example.org to request a free toolkit.
Find a Breastfeeding Welcome venue
To find a Breastfeeding Welcome venue, look out for the bright pink window sticker or visit the scheme website www.breastfeedingwelcomescheme.org.uk which lists venues who have registered and helps you to find them via a simple postcode search and allows you to feedback on how you found the venue when you visited.
Bromley PCT wants to see more support for mothers
Nicky Brown, Project Manager for Baby Friendly Initiative at Bromley PCT, said “Bromley PCT wants to see more support for mothers to breastfeed when out and about because we believe this will help drive a positive change in culture and acceptance of breastfeeding, giving women more confidence and thereby increase breastfeeding initiation and continuation rates in the area”.
The Breastfeeding Welcome Scheme was developed with the support of NHS Camden and over 150 venues in Camden, from children's centres to libraries to cafes, shops and salons are now registered. Three areas are now funding the rollout of the scheme: Bromley, Central London (Kensington & Chelsea) and Tower Hamlets.