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PHI Sacramento Office Recognized as Mother-Baby Friendly Workplace

May 14, 2019

PHI Sacramento Office Recognized as Mother-Baby Friendly WorkplaceOn May 14, the Public Health Institute’s Sacramento office was recognized with a 2019 Mother-Baby Friendly Workplace Award, an honor given to Sacramento businesses that have exemplary workplace support for their breastfeeding employees and a written lactation accommodation policy that is communicated to all employees.

The event and award was sponsored by Senator Wiener, with the California Breastfeeding Coalition, Sacramento Breastfeeding Coalition, and Breastfeeding Coalition of Placer, and supported by legislators from Senate Districts 6, 15, 20, 36, 39, and Assembly Districts 6, 7, 8, 9, 28, 47, 76, 77. District Assemblymember Ken Cooley and the Sacramento Breastfeeding Coalition presented PHI's award.

Says Suzanne Ryan Ibarra, PhD, MPH, a senior research scientist at the Public Health Institute who nominated PHI for the award, “PHI’s Sacramento office fully supported me to continue to breastfeed after returning to work when my son was five months old. Because of this support, I was able to exclusively breastfeed my son for six months and have continued to breastfeed him as of April 2019. PHI’s flexible work schedule and telecommute policy also allowed me to have the flexibility I needed to continue to breastfeed my son after I returned to work.”

Similar to PHI’s other locations, the Public Health Institute’s Sacramento office has a dedicated lactation room separated by a curtained partition PHI Sacramento Office Awarded as Mother-Baby Friendly Workplacethat allows one to two individuals to express breast milk or nurse. The room has two tables, two chairs, and a small refrigerator dedicated to store expressed breast milk. The room is adjacent to a larger room with a sink that can be used for cleaning pumping supplies as well as a water cooler with filtered water for filling up glasses of water to drink while pumping or nursing. PHI also has a written lactation policy that ensures employees who wish to express breast milk at work have the time and space to do so.

PHI and other businesses were recognized for making it easy for breastfeeding employees to express milk at work by (1) creating written breastfeeding policies; (2) ensuring all staff are aware of their policies; (3) informing expectant employees about accommodating their breastfeeding needs before and after leave and (4) creating an atmosphere of support. The event also emphasized the importance of creating and fostering a parent-baby friendly workplace as a key element in advancing social justice and equity.

PHI was one of two non-profits to receive the award. Congrats to all of the awardees, and to Senator Wiener and colleagues for recognizing the importance of family-friendly workplaces as a critical component of breastfeeding support.