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Feeding Out & About

It is perfectly normal to breastfeed away from home and with a bit of preparation it can be really easy to! Its normal to feel a little nervous at first, but it will get easier every time you feed in public. The first few times you do it, its helpful to be somewhere you find comfortable and relaxing. This could be in a quiet café or at a friends or member of your families house. It's your right to feed where you want, so find someone you feel relaxed and comfortable. 

Breastfeeding in public can mean breastfeeding in front of a relative or friend in your own home, or in a public place, such as a cafe or shopping centre.

During your baby's first few days, you may prefer to breastfeed only where you feel most comfortable. But, as you get more used to doing it, you're likely to feel more confident about breastfeeding in front of other people when you're out and about.

  • Breastfeeding your baby is something you should be proud of. It is your right in law to feed your baby where ever you want. 

    To begin with you may feel a little self conscious but you could consider the following to help you with this:

    • Look out for venues displaying the Breastfeeding Welcome Sticker.
    • Try practising in front of a mirror before you go out for the first time to find out exactly what can be seen.
    • You can buy special breastfeeding tops which are designed to help you breast feed in public. 
    • You could use a muslin or scarf as an additional cover if you would like some more cover.
    • Its good to know what your babies feeding cues are, so you can start to feed them before they cry, meaning that less people will notice what you are doing.

  • If you breastfeed in public, there may be someone who lets you know they disapprove. But remember you are not doing anything wrong. Know your legal rights and be proud of what you are doing for your baby.

    Your Rights

    • It is entirely legal to breastfeed in public places anywhere in the UK.
    • According to the Equality Act of 2010, it is considered sex discrimination if a breastfeeding woman is treated unfairly anywhere in the UK.
    • Shops, cafe, restaurants or any service provider dealing directly with the public must not discriminate, harass or victimise a woman because she is breastfeeding. Discrimination includes refusing to provide a service, providing a lower standard of service or providing a service on different terms.
    • Businesses, such as a cafes, restaurants and shops, are not allowed to ask a woman to stop breastfeeding her child or refuse to serve her. 

    To find out more about your legal rights when breastfeeding *click here*.

  • Its a good idea to make a list of good places to breastfeed in public near you, so you don’t search to find somewhere when you are out. Shopping malls, department stores and babywear shops often have baby-feeding rooms, which are quiet and private with a comfy chair and changing facilities.

    Each location on this map has been recommended by 'Breastfeeding Mum Meets' as breastfeeding friendly.

    To use the map, click on each of the icons to find out more about the location. 

    Search for Breastfeeding Mum Meets on Facebook and join their group to get involved. 

Who Can Help?

If your baby is less than 28 days old you can contact your local midwifery team or you can contact the Healthy Child Programme at any time following your baby's birth by calling Just One Number on 0300 300 0123 or texting Parentline on 07520631590.

Our opening hours are 8am-6pm Monday-Friday (excluding bank holidays) and 9am-1pm on Saturdays. Norfolk Healthy Child Programme has a team of infant feeding champions who can contact you by video call/telephone initially to discuss your questions and refer you to further help if required. All of our staff are trained to Unicef standards to provide you with the best possible breastfeeding support and advice.

It may help in the first instance to look again at our page on Positioning and Attachment and *click here* to read the Essential Guide to Feeding & Caring for your Baby. 

If you would like to make connections with other parents please click on the links for our Just One Norfolk Community Forum; the Norfolk Community Directory and Early Childhood & Family Service (ECFS) below

 

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