March 8, 2016 - Nacogdoches, Texas, February 19th, 2016 – Nacogdoches Medical Center today joined a growing number of Texas businesses by becoming designated as a Texas Mother-Friendly Worksite. Mother-Friendly employers proactively support employees who choose to breastfeed their infants by providing time, space, and other supports to maintain breastfeeding after returning to work. Employers that provide Mother-Friendly Worksites benefit from increased employee retention, lower absenteeism, higher morale, greater productivity, reduced health care costs, and improved short- and long-term health of the breastfeeding mother and her child.
Created by the Texas Legislature in 1995 and administered by the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS), the Texas Mother-Friendly Worksite Program recognizes employers with written policies reflecting their support for their breastfeeding employees. Such policies provide work schedule flexibility to allow milk expression breaks; offer a private space, other than a bathroom, where the employee can pump or breastfeed; and ensure easy access to a clean water source and hygienic milk storage arrangements.
To be designated as a Texas Mother-Friendly Worksite, an employer must submit an application and qualifying written employee breastfeeding support policy to DSHS. An online application and listing of Texas Mother-Friendly Worksites is available on the program’s website, http://texasmotherfriendly.org
Texas Mother-Friendly Worksites represent a wide range of employment sectors, settings, and worksite sizes. A small sampling of employers with the Texas Mother-Friendly Worksite designation include: City of San Antonio; Whole Foods Market; Texas Mutual Insurance Company; GameStop, Inc; BazaarVoice; Tesoro; The Children’s Courtyard; Freescale; Westwood High School; IBM, Corp; Texas Pit Stop BBQ; Texas Tech University; and Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Company. Also designated are numerous hospitals, state agencies, and health and human services employers.
“We want our employees who are new mothers to know that we support their decision to continue breastfeeding,” said Teresa Farrell, Chief Human Resources Officer. “We are extremely pleased to be designated as a Texas Mother-Friendly Worksite.”
For more information on the Texas Mother-Friendly Worksite Program, visit the program’s website at http://texasmotherfriendly.org or contact the Department of State Health Services at 512-458-7111.