Derry & Strabane Council is to erect signage making it clear that breastfeeding mothers are welcome throughout its public premises.
A report recommending the council enlist its various public premises such as leisure centres, offices and visitor attractions as part of the Public Health Agency’s ‘Breastfeeding Welcome Here’ scheme was brought before the council’s Health and Community Committee on Thursday.
The report states: “The PHA would like support from Derry City and Strabane District Council in the development of this scheme by introducing it to any Council premises which are open to the public.
“This will involve the display of a window sticker and a certificate.
“It will also mean that a breast feeding mother will not be asked to move to another area or to stop breast feeding. They may be directed to a suitable area within the premises.
“By encouraging breast feeding, Derry City and Strabane District Council will be helping to protect the health of mothers and babies in our community as breast feeding has really important health benefits for babies and mothers.
“The ethos of the breast feeding scheme fits well with that of the Healthy City Network.”
The scheme was developed by the PHA in a bid to “promote and normalise breastfeeding within Northern Ireland”, and any business which is open to the general public is eligible to join.
The scheme was initially brought before the former Derry City Council in February 2015, and it has now been agreed that the scheme will be rolled out in premises across the new Derry Strabane Council area.