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Erie County recognizes National Breastfeeding Month and World Breastfeeding Week; officials attend Healthy Baby Festival

Deputy County Executive Lisa Chimera and Erie County Health Commissioner Dr. Gale Burstein welcome expectant and young families to the Kenmore Healthy Baby Festival

Deputy Erie County Executive Lisa Chimera and Commissioner of Health Dr. Gale Burstein attended the Catholic Charities WIC Healthy Baby Festival on August 2 at Mang Park in Kenmore. The free festival was supported by local community agencies and sponsored in part by Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield of Western New York, with concurrent festivals held in Chautauqua and Niagara counties. The two officials presented a proclamation recognizing World Breastfeeding Week (August 1-7) in Erie County. Black Breastfeeding Week (August 25-31)  and National Breastfeeding Month are also established to raise awareness and galvanize action on themes related to breastfeeding and its health benefits.

“Erie County, our Department of Health and the Live Well Erie initiative are all committed to promoting and protecting a mother’s right to breastfeed her child for as long as she chooses,” said Deputy County Executive Chimera. “As a mother, I understand the challenges new parents face in returning to the workplace. By offering a designated space for women to safely express milk during the workday, we support the health and well-being of both mom and baby.”

“Breastfeeding can be a challenging process, but the systems we put in place with employers make that process easier for new parents, and the health benefits for parents and babies are significant and lasting,” said Commissioner Burstein.

The Erie County Department of Health (ECDOH) works with hospitals, doctor’s offices and community organizations to support nursing mothers. In addition, ECDOH has services to support workplaces in earning a “Breastfeeding Friendly” designation.

For ECDOH to designate a workplace as "Breastfeeding Friendly,” the worksite must meet the minimum requirements under law; many sites exceed those requirements and provide additional accommodations.

ECDOH provides technical assistance to worksites to help them obtain the designation of a Breastfeeding Friendly Workplace. Employers can call 716-858-7277 for more information about this process.


Erie County Department of Health, Breastfeeding


Jamee Felt and Katie Constantino from Catholic Charities receive a proclamation for World Breastfeeding Week from Deputy County Executive Lisa Chimera and Commissioner of Health Dr. Gale Burstein