PIA Press Release
Thursday, January 19, 2012
Companies told to set up breastfeeding facilitiesby Aurora J. Casimpan
TACLOBAN CITY, Leyte, Jan 19 (PIA) -- The concern for the importance of breastfeeding has the Department of Labor and Employment enjoining big firms in Eastern Visayas to set up breastfeeding centers in their companies.
The setting up of a breastfeeding center by a company is in compliance with Republic Act No. 10028 or the “Expanded Breastfeeding Promotion Act,” which mandates breastfeeding facilities in public areas and offices and “milk breast” for nursing female employees.
DOLE regional director Forter Puguon has enjoined big companies in the region to comply with the law saying it can be a form of non-wage benefit for the employees of a firm.
Puguon said also that setting up breastfeeding facilities can be a form of reward to employees union for nine consecutive years of industrial peace in the region. He urged firms to take advantage of the relative peace in the industrial arena as a sign of a company’s concern for its workers.
Bigger companies are prioritized in the establishment of breastfeeding centers because it has bigger space; the labor department will focus on small and medium enterprises next.
Puguon stressed on the need to address the health concerns of children of company employees saying that the act is a non-wage benefit which will ease pressure on workers to seek for wage increase. Breastfeeding will lessen expense to buy milk formula with money that can be used for other needs of the family.
Accordingly a breastfeeding center should be a private and comfortable area where lactating employees can use to breastfeed their infants. The facility should also include a chair, table, hand washing facility, and cold storage facility or refrigerator.
Last year, companies with breastfeeding facilities are Samar Electric Cooperative in Paranas, Samar; Philippine Association Smelting and Refining Corporation in Isabel, Leyte; Robinson’s Place and Gaisano Capital in Tacloban City. (PIA-8)