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State opens breastfeeding room at Komtar

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BREASTFEEDING mothers working in Komtar, Penang, can now nurse their children during working hours in a specially set up room for them.


The room, which cost RM3,000, is situated at the corner of the Information Department at the Chief Minister’s office on the 47th floor of Komtar.


Just beside a pantry that is equipped with a refrigerator, cupboards and a sink, the room has several sofas and a coffee table.


State Youth and Sports, Women, Family and Community Development chairman Lydia Ong Kok Fooi said that more than 80% of employees in Komtar were female and almost 30% of them had recently given birth.


“We are looking into setting up more of such rooms in the other departments as well as in other state buildings.


“The Penang Municipal Council is also in discussions to include a breastfeeding room as a requirement for the approval of building plans,” she told a press conference yesterday.


She added that the state had allocated RM50,000 to promote Penang as ‘A Breastfeeding Friendly State’ by holding workshops and talks for the public.


World Alliance for Breastfeeding Action (WABA) deputy director Julianna Lim Abdullah said that with such facilities, breastfeeding mothers need not express milk or feed their child in the toilet anymore.


“It does not cost much to set up a breastfeeding room. There is nothing fancy to it. It just needs a refrigerator,” she said, adding that the best part of life for the child is breastfeeding.


A mother in the Mother-to-Mother Peer Support group Sabrina Sunderraj said that the idea of breastfeeding will grow if there was community support.


Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng was present for the launch of the new breastfeeding room.