Coronation Street actress and restaurant owner Jennie McAlpine welcomed a group of breastfeeding mums to her city centre restaurant Annies for the launch of a brand new Breast Feeding Friendly mark.
Businesses in Manchester are being encouraged during World Breastfeeding week ( 1 – 7 August) to sign up to a new breastfeeding welcome scheme to support mothers who want to breastfeed their babies whilst out and about in the city.
The Breastfeeding Friendly Mark is a sign that restaurants and cafés can put in their window or door to alert people they are a breastfeeding-friendly business.
The initiative comes from Public Health experts within Manchester Health and Care Commissioning (MHCC) which is a partnership agreement between Manchester NHS Clinical Commissioning Group and Manchester City Council.
It is part of the life course approach in Manchester with the focus on starting well. The UK has one of the lowest breastfeeding rates in the world and health professionals want to encourage as many mothers to feed breastfeed their babies exclusively for the first six months as research show that there are huge benefits to the mother and the child’s health.
Councillor Bev Craig, Executive Member for Adult Health and Social Care said:
“We want Manchester to be a welcoming place for parents and this is a positive step. Many businesses already are breastfeeding friendly but we want to break down any barriers that mothers may have about feeding their child in public so they know when they enter a café or restaurant in the city that they won’t get a hostile reaction.”
Annie’s restaurant in the city centre is one of the first businesses to sign up and Jennie McAlpine, Coronation Street actor and owner of Annie’s restaurant in Manchester City Centre, said:
“The breastfeeding friendly mark is such a great and welcome idea. We at Annies will be proudly displaying ours. As a mum, finding a place where you can feed your baby in what you know are comfy and welcoming surroundings is so important. Well done Manchester!”
David Regan, Director of Population Health and Wellbeing at Manchester Health and Care Commissioning , said:
“There are proven health benefits to breastfeeding and this campaign emphasises our commitment to support mothers across the city to breastfeed. We want breastfeeding in public to be a normal part of everyday life and we ask all businesses and organisations across the city to join the breastfeeding-friendly scheme.”