Please note: Inclusion of an item in this e-newsletter does NOT imply endorsement or support of such item by the United States Breastfeeding Committee, unless specifically noted.
Preliminary Injunction Halts Overtime Rule, from DOL
A federal judge in Texas has granted a preliminary injunction suspending the implementation of the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) final rule updating the Fair Labor Standards Act overtime regulations. The injunction preserves the existing overtime rule until the court has a chance to review the merits of a lawsuit challenging the DOL's authority to raise the salary threshold. The rule had been scheduled to take effect December 1, and would raise the standard salary level for overtime eligibility so that salaried workers making up to $47,476 would be eligible for overtime pay when they work more than 40 hours in a workweek; automatically update the salary threshold every three years based on wage growth over time; strengthen overtime protections for salaried workers already entitled to overtime; and provide greater clarity for workers and employers. By increasing the number of employees who are considered nonexempt under the Fair Labor Standards Act, the proposal would also expand the right to workplace accommodations for breastfeeding under the "Break Time for Nursing Mothers" law. Media and partner highlights included:
- The New York Times: "Judge Suspends Rule Expanding Overtime for Millions of Workers"
- Nonprofit Quarterly: "Federal Judge Suspends Overtime Rule Changes"
- National Partnership for Women & Families: "Millions of Women, Workers Will Suffer If Injunction Against Overtime Rule Stands"
- Society for Human Resources Management: "The Overtime Rule Has Been Blocked. Now What?"
Federal Agency Database Compilation, from HHS/OMH
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' Office of Minority Health has released "Compendium of Publicly Available Datasets and Other Data-Related Resources," a free resource that compiles descriptions of and links to 132 public datasets and resources that include information about health conditions and other factors that impact the health of minority populations. The Compendium was created by the Federal Interagency Health Equity Team of the National Partnership for Action to End Health Disparities to advance research, public policy and the public's knowledge of issues related to health equity. The Compendium provides a one-stop shop for researchers, public policymakers and staff, the general public and all who are interested in the intersection of health, health care, health disparities and social determinants of health.
Infant Formula Marketing Analysis, from BMSG
Berkeley Media Studies Group has released two documents about the practices of the formula marketing industry in the U.S. "Mother and child promotion: A preliminary analysis of social media marketing of infant formula" addresses the research gap around the effect of digital infant formula advertising as a barrier to successful breastfeeding. "Preliminary review of consumer protection and self-regulation of infant formula marketing" provides an overview of consumer protection policies that govern infant formula marketing and related self-regulation and international codes of conduct.
Speak Up Campaign on C-Sections, from TJC
The Joint Commission has launched Speak Up™: The ABCs of C-Sections, a campaign to help educate expectant mothers, their partners, and caregiver on cesarean births. The campaign outlines when a C-section may be needed, highlights the risks associated with C-sections, and encourages expectant mothers to speak with their doctor about C-sections during prenatal care visits. An animated video and infographic are available for free download and use, including Spanish versions.
News from the Field
Paid Leave Health Policy Brief, from Health Affairs
Health Affairs has issued a new paid family and medical leave brief exploring the background, current laws, proposed laws, opposing views on the paid family and medical leave debate, and expectations for the future of paid leave policy.
Joint Statement On State Support of Breastfeeding, from OHCHR
The UN Special Rapporteurs on the Right to Food, Right to Health, the Working Group on Discrimination against Women in law and in practice, and the Committee on the Rights of the Child have released a joint statement in support of increased efforts to promote, support, and protect breastfeeding. The statement reminds States of their obligations under relevant international human rights treaties to provide all necessary support and protection to mothers and their infants and young children to facilitate optimal feeding practices. Read the press release.
Impact of ACA Lactation Support Services Mandate on Breastfeeding Initiation, from HSR
Health Services Research has released an article entitled, "Lactation Support Services and Breastfeeding Initiation: Evidence from the Affordable Care Act." The article presents the results of research on whether mandated coverage of lactation support services under the Affordable Care Act (ACA) affects breastfeeding behavior. Results suggest that the ACA mandate increased the probability of breastfeeding initiation by 2.5 percentage points, which translates into about 47,000 more infants for whom breastfeeding was initiated in 2014. The study found larger effects for black, less educated, and unmarried mothers.
Impact of Suboptimal Breastfeeding on Health Disparities, from Journal of Pediatrics
The Journal of Pediatrics has released a new research article entitled, "Disparities in Breastfeeding: Impact on Maternal and Child Health Outcomes and Costs." The study found that suboptimal breastfeeding is associated with a greater burden of disease among non-Hispanic blacks (NHB) and Hispanic populations. Compared with a non-Hispanic white (NHW) population, a NHB population had 1.7 times the number of excess cases of acute otitis media attributable to suboptimal breastfeeding, 3.3 times the number of excess cases of necrotizing enterocolitis, and 2.2 times the number of excess child deaths. Compared with a NHW population, a Hispanic population had 1.4 times the number of excess cases of gastrointestinal infection and 1.5 times the number of excess child deaths. Media highlights included:
- Science Daily: "Alarming disparities in health outcomes could be prevented by breastfeeding"
- UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health: "Lack of optimal breastfeeding may cause alarming disparities in infant deaths, study finds"
State and Community News
New Native Breastfeeding Coalition, from Wisconsin
Wisconsin Tribes have come together to form the Native Breastfeeding Coalition of Wisconsin. Breastfeeding: The Traditional Way is a program created by Great Lakes Inter-Tribal Council to encourage Tribal women to feed their babies in the healthiest way with the goal of exclusive breastfeeding for at least the first six months of life for all eleven Tribes in the State of Wisconsin. The first objective for the program was to create a Tribal Coalition that supports and encourages breastfeeding by improving community support. The Native Breastfeeding Coalition of Wisconsin will meet quarterly, hosted by member Tribes across the state.
Collective Impact Connection
Understanding Network Effects, from IISC
The Interaction Institute for Social Change has released a blog post entitled, "Network Behaviors to Leverage Network Effects." The post emphasizes that networks have the ability to leverage "network effects," such as rapid growth and diffusion, small world reach, resilience, adaptive capacity, and systemic change. The article includes a list of 20 behaviors that leverage network effects.
News & Views
The Huffington Post: "The U.S. Should Meet Global Standards On Breastfeeding And Paid Leave"
The Independent: "Woman creates breastfeeding Barbie doll to battle stigma"
Modern Healthcare: "CEO Power Panel: No repeal without replace"