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Thousands of Women Will Breastfeed in Public to Kick Off World Breastfeeding Week

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Thousands of mothers around the world will breastfeed together for one minute in public on Saturday, to raise awareness about breastfeeding.

The worldwide event, called the “Big Latch On,” is part of World Breast Feeding week from Aug. 1 to Aug. 7, started by the World Alliance for Breastfeeding Action. The annual event, launched in 1992, is a partnership of global organizations looking to promote breast feeding around the world. Each year, the week is organized around a theme, and the theme for 2015—”Breastfeeding and Work: Let’s Make It Work!”—is designed to help promote policies that make it easier for women to breastfeed and work at the same time. This year, the week will be celebrated 176 countries.

Guy Ryder, director-general of the International Labour Organization, a specialized agency of the U.N., has said that the issue of maternity protections and work is a priority for improving gender equality around the world: “globally more than 800 million women workers, or 41%, still don’t have adequate maternity protection,” he said.

The World Health Organization recommends exclusive breast feeding for the first 6 months of an infant’s life.

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