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August 25 - August 30, 2019: Black Breastfeeding Week
August 25, 2019
WHEREAS, Michigan is committed to reducing infant mortality and increasing the health outcomes of mothers and babies during National Breastfeeding Month; and,
WHEREAS, Michigan is committed to making birth and motherhood safer through respectful clinical practices and interventions to reduce and prevent inequities experienced by black mothers and babies; and,
WHEREAS, black infants have the highest infant death rate compared to other races and ethnicities in Michigan; and,
WHEREAS, these high rates of infant death have been attributed to infants being born too small, too early, and too sick, as infants are susceptible to viruses and infections that can put them at an even greater risk of death; and,
WHEREAS, an appropriate intervention to prevent some of these deaths is through breastfeeding; and,
WHEREAS, breastfeeding provides countless benefits to the nursing infant including easy digestion, production of antibodies and reduced risk of infections and childhood obesity; benefits to the breastfeeding mother include faster recovery from birth, reduced risk for postpartum hemorrhage and uterine cancer, as well as saving money; and,
WHEREAS, there is a significant need for a targeted and accelerated approach to improve black breastfeeding rates so these rates can meet the national benchmarks set forth by the Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion; and,
WHEREAS, there are unique barriers black families face, which lead to insufficient promotional and educational efforts about the benefits of breastfeeding and a lack of participation as a result; and,
WHEREAS, during this week, we are dedicated to broadening public understanding of the critical impact breastfeeding has on improving the health of infants and mothers and reducing infant mortality rates within the black community;
NOW, THEREFORE, I, Gretchen Whitmer, governor of Michigan, join with the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services to hereby proclaim the week of August 25-31, 2019, as Black Breastfeeding Week in Michigan.