Breastfeeding Friendly Workplaces

The Canadian Pediatric Society, Health Canada, Dietitians of Canada, Breastfeeding Committee for Canada, and the Public Health Agency of Canada recommend that women feed their babies only breast milk for the first six months of life.  Women should continue to breastfeed their babies for up to two years or longer with appropriate complementary feeding.  This means that some women will continue to breastfeed after returning to work.  A supportive work environment can make a big difference in having a successful breastfeeding experience that will benefit babies, mothers and employers!

Breastfeeding has many benefits for babies, mothers, and employers.  For babies, breastfeeding can promote increased brain development; prevent overfeeding; decrease the risk of  ear infections, lower respiratory infections and digestive diseases; and decrease the risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS), obesity, diabetes and some forms of cancer.  Breastfeeding also benefits the mother as women who breastfeed their infants have fewer post-partum complications and are less likely to develop certain types of ovarian and breast cancers.

Breastfeeding also benefits employers.  Breastfeeding reduces the need for health services that must be paid for by extended health care plans, government agencies or families, as well as reduces absenteeism at work by decreasing the amount of time off that parents may need to care for sick children.

Project Health Handbook
The Project Health Handbook provides the employer with topic-specific background information to help make a business case for workplace wellness planning and programming, including suggested workplace wellness goals and topic specific comprehensive workplace health promotion strategies. Click to access the Breastfeeding Friendly Workplaces section of the Handbook for Healthy Workplaces in Waterloo Region.

Project Health offers a variety of services to workplaces on specific health-related topics (see the Project Health Topics section of the website for specific topic areas):

Project Health offers a variety of resources on each of our health promotion topics (see the Project Health Topics section of the website for specific topic areas):