‘Government is failing to implement breastfeeding policies’ – Embrace

SABC News reports that most women struggle to navigate between new responsibilities of motherhood and being working professionals. More than half a billion working women don’t have maternity protections across the globe. The World Health Organisation says only 20%of countries require employers to provide employees with paid breaks and facilities for breastfeeding.

A Mahikeng-based working mother, Kgalalelo Ntumelang says, “It was quite a challenge for me to balance motherhood and work, especially during my breastfeeding period, where I had to fight with my seniors to get time to breastfeed my son during working hours ,because the argument was that your work will suffer, so I had to pull up my socks. I had to work harder than my other  colleagues because at the time I had to take time from my working hours and go and breastfeed.”

A mothers’ organisation called, the Embrace says government is failing to implement breastfeeding policies. The organisation’s Amanda Tlotlisang says, ” We know that most workplaces are not breastfreeding-friendly, the code of good practice is intended to guide the employer on the application of the Basic Condition of Employment Act, but it doesn’t specifically give clear guidance on how to create an enabling environment for mothers. So it is left to employers to take a lead on ensuring that there the workplaces are breastfeeding-friendly and we know that many employers have a designated breastfeeding rooms inside for employers.”

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