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Friday, March 08, 2019

MAYOR WALSH UNVEILS NEW RESOURCE FOR PARENTS AT BOSTON CITY HALL

MAYOR WALSH UNVEILS NEW RESOURCE FOR PARENTS AT BOSTON CITY HALL 
A public lactation room has been installed on the third floor of Boston City Hall to support those breastfeeding
 

BOSTON - Friday, March 8, 2019 - Mayor Martin J. Walsh today celebrated the arrival of Boston's first-ever public lactation booth at Boston City Hall, creating a new resource and space for parents. The lactation room is located in the main lobby on the third floor of Boston City Hall, adjacent to the south elevators. This free, convenient resource is available for anyone at City Hall who is looking for privacy to breastfeed or pump during normal business hours.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, while over 80 percent of infants begin breastfeeding at birth, many parents are not able to reach their breastfeeding goals due to lack of adequate support. Providing an optional and accessible space for breastfeeding or pumping milk is a step toward supporting parents and families who visit Boston City Hall. Led by the Mayor's Office, this initiative was a joint effort among Property Management, the Digital team, the Mayor's Offices of Women's Advancement, New Urban Mechanics, and Strategic Partnerships.

"At Boston City Hall and throughout our city, we need to ensure there are resources and support for parents, and I'm proud this new resource will be available to all at City Hall," said Mayor Walsh. "We look forward to continuing our work supporting parents and children throughout Boston, building resource for those who are raising the next generation of Bostonians."

The lactation room, created by Mamava, a woman-owned business dedicated to transforming the culture of breastfeeding, is a self-contained, mobile room with comfortable benches, a fold-down table, and an electrical outlet for plugging in a breast pump. Visitors are welcome to breastfeed anywhere in City Hall; the lactation room is an additional option for those seeking privacy. To access the room, visitors can download the Mamava mobile app or go to the information desk in the main lobby.

"We're thrilled to support breastfeeding people at Boston City Hall," said Sascha Mayer, Co-founder and CEO of Mamava. "We believe that all caregivers deserve a clean, comfortable, and dignified place to use a breast pump or breastfeed distraction-free -- anywhere, anytime. Mamava pods provide flexibility for facilities and easy access."

Mayor Walsh debuted the lactation room during the International Women's Day commemoration held at Boston City Hall. The event featured remarks from former Boston Artist in Residence Nakia Hill, the City of Boston's Poet Laureate Porsha Olayiwola, the City of Boston's women's employee resource group liaison Ann Carbone, and Christine Dodson, Chief Operating Officer at Mamava.

"As a working mother, I can relate to the many challenges parents face when caring for a new child," said Tania Del Rio, Executive Director of Women's Advancement. "For breastfeeding people, especially those who prefer feeding their baby or pumping in a private space, the lactation room can provide a much needed respite. I am proud of the diverse team at City Hall that made this happen."

This space continues the work of the Mayor's Office of Women's Advancement, whose work includes research on paid parental leave and childcare affordability; a multi-pronged approach to closing the gender wage gap; reducing the demand for sex trafficking in the City of Boston; and creating specific programming for women entrepreneurs.

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