Attempt to improve breast feeders’ rights
Labour MP Steve Chadwick has drawn up legislation which will make it illegal to ask someone not to breastfeed.
The passage of this legislation could be quite interesting. Lets look at some of the other considerations that need to be taken into account, in particular the breast feedees rights.
You may be aware that some women should not breast feed. Their breast milk is so weak that when they are feeding, although they are producing sufficient quantity of milk, the quality of the milk is so low; they are effectively starving their child. This initially would be detected by a plunket nurse through failure to increase weight. If not, the baby’s condition will deteriorate to a semi comatose state through malnutrition. Yes this is a condition that even our own Star Ship hospital has seen.
If the State is going to take breast feeding into the legislative path other issues will need to be considered.
Firstly the quality of the breast milk. Should women have to past a breast milk quality test to ensure that the child is not abused by legal breast feeding in public.
Should women be certified to breast feed in public?
Look at the situation where you know that your partner should not be breast feeding but feeding formula, but just wants to be like her friends and feed in public.
Should there be a defence for a father to stop legal breast feeding in the interests of the child, or does he have to report this to cyps. ?
Should cyps have a register of women not authorised to provide breast milk to their baby.
In certain cases ie mothers known to be taking drugs or women inclined not to look after themselves who have border line results for breast milk quality have weekly tests for breast milk quality and drug contamination.
Should women who have drug contamination in their breast milk have their benefit reduced by the cost of formula and given formula vouchers to ensure the baby is feed.
If you are breast feeding in private the state has to rely on the integrity of the individuals involved. If you are breast feeding in public by law then the state has to take total responsibility for the wellbeing of the child.
Seems there could be more to this bill than meets the eye.