Breastfeeding Friendly Workplace: Support for Breastfeeding Mothers
Narrator: Breastfeeding Friendly Workplace: Support for Breastfeeding Mothers
Narrator: A human resources consultant is working hard in her office. She is making a video for online training for management to introduce how to support breastfeeding in the workplace…
Consultant: To create a Breastfeeding Friendly Workplace, you can give your staff time, space and related facilities to work out the magic! Of course, the understanding and support from managers and colleagues is crucial to its success.
Consultant: Let's see how your company can "latch on" to a supportive environment for breastfeeding staff.
Consultant: Give them time.
Consultant: Lactation breaks can fit into the schedule of breastfeeding staff.
Allow about two 30-minute lactation breaks within an eight-hour shift for at least one year after childbirth.
You may adopt a flexible approach thereafter.
Consultant: Lactation breaks are considered paid working time. Certainly, no proof of breastfeeding is required.
Consultant: Moreover, staff are not expected to work for longer hours to make up for the time spent on milk expression.
Consultant: Give them SPACE.
Consultant: You just need to provide a private area for your breastfeeding staff. It does not have to be a large space, but privacy is the key.
Narrator: The consultant then waves her finger to transform an ordinary room into a designated lactation room and introduces the appropriate environment for expression.
Consultant: A designated room for expression, of course, is an ideal area for your staff's "Mummy's Time".
Consultant: It should be clean, with a comfortable chair with a backrest.
Consultant: A small table for placing items is needed during breast milk expression.
Consultant: A power socket for plugging in breast pumps. Make sure it is conveniently located without being hidden by furniture. Don't forget a door lock from the inside.
Consultant: A sink, liquid soap or alcohol hand rub and storage lockers are great options too.
Narrator: The breastfeeding staff feel comfortable to express milk in the lactation room.
Consultant: If designating a lactation room is impossible, try using other resources creatively.
Narrator: The consultant then waves her finger to transform a conference room into a lactation room.
Consultant: Common spaces can be flexibly used. Make the most out of areas such as conference or multi-function rooms. You can reserve time slots for breastfeeding employees on a temporary basis.
Narrator: The consultant then waves her finger again to transform a corner into a lactation corner with a screen.
Consultant: Or set up a screen or curtain in a clean quiet corner for expressing breastmilk. Make sure a clear signage such as "Occupied" or "Mummy's Time" is displayed.
Other than an office setting, we can identify locations that offer more options for other breastfeeding staff. For example, a fitting room in a retail boutique can be a good choice for salesladies, or a vacant guest room in a restaurant is an excellent option for catering staff.
Remember, toilets or restrooms should be avoided for hygiene reasons.
Consultant: If all the above are not feasible, allow your breastfeeding staff to visit community baby care rooms or lactation rooms nearby during lactation breaks.
Consultant: For breastmilk storage, a mini pantry fridge or a cool box will do. A separate fridge for storing breastmilk is not a must.
Consultant: However, do pay attention to food hygiene: reserve space for breastmilk, such as the top inner shelf which is clean and safe to prevent food contamination.
Consultant: Just a few steps can make your breastfeeding staff feel supported.
Consultant: All women in Hong Kong are now protected from breastfeeding discrimination and harassment under the Sex Discrimination Ordinance in various sectors. Let's build good practices in the workplace!
Narrator: If you want to become a Breastfeeding Friendly Workplace, please contact The Hong Kong Committee for UNICEF on the "SayYesToBreastfeeding" campaign at 2836 2913.
Narrator: For more information about a Breastfeeding Friendly Workplace, please watch the related video series.
Narrator: You may also visit the website for the Family Health Service of the Department of Health at www.fhs.gov.hk and refer to the corresponding pamphlets.
This video is produced by the Family Health Service of the Department of Health.