Resources For Surviving Inauguration Weekend as a Nursing or Pumping Mom 2017

While the ACA protects a mother’s right to pump when she is at work, our country and our city have some work to do to make breast-pumping more accessible to mothers when they aren’t at work or at home. Public locations to pump are often limited to bathrooms (ick!), and even then outlets can be difficult to find. That said, private locations to pump near The National Mall this week may be even harder to find than normal, but we’ve put together some resources to help!

  1. As you probably know, it is your right to breastfeed anywhere you can legally be in DC! Sometimes you may encounter strangers who aren’t as aware as they could be that the law protects nursing mothers and babies. Here is a simple card you may want to print out, explaining your rights as a nursing mother.

 

2. Here is A MAP (!!!) of locations that have indicated an intention to set up private or semi-private nursing and pumping areas, or that have family restrooms with outlets and benches:

3. There are MANY restrictions about what one can carry at both the Inauguration and at the Women’s March. Amongst the banned items are coolers and some backpacks. For instance, only small bags and clear backpacks will be allowed at the Women’s March. We highly suggest a thorough review the appropriate FAQ to see what you can bring, as well as these helpful tools and products:

Here are some products you may want to consider purchasing if possible:

  • a clear backpack measuring 17″x12″x6″ (each person in your group may carry one)
  • a hand pump, particularly a low-tech silicone one that can’t break
  • a baby carrier that can double as a nursing or pumping cover (if you feel you need it)
  • baby hearing protection

To be clear–the Breastfeeding Center does not believe that bathrooms are an appropriate place to force mothers to nurse or pump. Nor does nursing need to be confined to a “special” area. You can nurse anywhere–it is your right! But there are many reasons a mom or baby might need a private, quiet space to nurse. And for many mothers pumping requires an outlet and privacy. We think there should absolutely be a separate nursing/pumping area next to every family bathroom in the city. The Breastfeeding Center also doesn’t think you should need to purchase special products in order to feed your babe. Breastfeeding is the oldest, and most low-tech way to feed a baby. But our modern world has evolved myriad ways to make feeding a baby more challenging than it needs to be. The Breastfeeding Center is here to bridge that modern gap for mothers and babies–to provide support, community, and resources for NOW, while pushing forward toward a time when there are no social barriers to breastfeeding.

We will be offering Home Visits, but the Breastfeeding Center will be CLOSED, Friday, January 20th-Sunday, January 22nd. You can request a home appointment online, here. If you need supplies or a hospital-grade pump, our staff will do our best to get them to you. Please call 202.293.5182 and either leave a message or use the after-hours line given on our voicemail.

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