Opposition to Breast-Feeding Resolution by U.S. Stuns World Health Officials

in #breastfeeding2 years ago (edited)

Once again something that is natural and hugely beneficial to all humans and something that is free, has come under fire. This time it is breast milk and it has come under attack from the American Government. During the United Nations-affiliated World Health Assembly in May, Ecuador attempted to introduce a resolution to promote breastfeeding around the world. This is something that was expected to be passed quickly and easily.

Since 2015 less than 40% of babies under 6 months are being breastfed in low income and middle income countries. This is huge, especially since these countries are not able to afford to buy the amount of formula milk needed to keep their babies well fed and nourished. I wrote an article 2 months ago which was about Nestle pushing formula milk onto mothers in poor countries. Once again Nestle are up to their old tricks, even with the International Code of Marketing of Breast milk Substitutes in place.

This time however it was in the Philippines and mothers were being offered free samples within maternity wards, where staff who were given bonuses were promoting it as well. This led to mums being discharged home dependent on formula to feed their babies as breastfeeding was not encouraged and would now be difficult to commence. The result once again is poor families with malnourished babies, as they can not afford to buy enough of the formula and they are also having to make the formula with dirty water, it was like taking a step back in history.

Image Source:https://unlatched.wordpress.com/2013/04/23/why-nestle-is-evil-it-goes-beyond-just-infant-formula/

So the resolution put forward by Ecuador had come at a really good time as it is pushing for the promotion of breastfeeding especially in poorer countries. But in stepped America, asking that the language being used by governments to “protect, promote and support breastfeeding” be removed

and another passage that called on policymakers to restrict the promotion of food products that many experts say can have deleterious effects on young children.


When that was refused they then began to make threats that unless Ecuador drop the resolution they would enforce trade measures and withdraw military aid from the country.

The Americans were blunt: If Ecuador refused to drop the resolution, Washington would unleash punishing trade measures and withdraw crucial military aid. The Ecuadorean government quickly acquiesced.

Patti Rundall, policy director of the British advocacy group Baby Milk Action who was in attention at the meeting stated within the same Newspaper article that

“What happened was tantamount to blackmail, with the US holding the world hostage and trying to overturn nearly 40 years of consensus on the best way to protect infant and young child health,”

As it stands the baby formula industry is worth $70 billion and with the recent decrease in sales in Western Countries due to an increase in breastfeeding there, they of course were hoping that the poorer countries would be able to make up in any financial loss. So of course they wish to protect their investments and keep this billion dollar business going. The actions by American officials show us once again how the well being of large corporations is far more important than the well being of our children and future children. Money over lives as usual.

In the end Russia stepped in and declared that they would sponsor the resolution that was put forward by Ecuador.


Image Source:https://www.boredpanda.com/breastfeeding-photos-tree-of-life/

I am a huge advocate of breastfeeding, it is one of the most natural things in the world for a mother to do. I understand that sometimes it is not possible and I know from personal experience that it can be very painful at the beginning. I experienced problems at the beginning with all third of my girls, but I was determined to feed them so I stuck with it and I am very happy I did. Breast milk is designed to nourish our children, it provides babies with everything they need. I could write another article discussing this alone. Mothers need support when it comes to breastfeeding, they also need to be aware of the numerous health benefits for both themselves and their babies if and when they do decide to breastfeed.

But It seems that everything that is natural within our world is under attack. From how we choose to live our lives to how we choose to birth and raise our children. Which are all things that really do result in us becoming more empowered. They are so important if we are to bring about change and are things are are definitely worth fighting for.

1st Image Source:https://www.davidicke.com/article/484861/u-s-opposition-breast-feeding-resolution-stuns-world-health-officials

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I hate hearing this! Just let us feed our precious babes the way our bodies were made to allow us! My heart breaks for those who are not able too. I was able to breastfeed with my youngest, my oldest, was different story. I was younger and the nurse at the hospital was very rude and literally tore me down. She straight up told me, "If you can't handle contractions, you won't be a good nursing mom." she wouldn't even help me try. I was super frustrated but I wasn't as outspoken as I am now. So i just shut down. :( Thank you for being such a big supporter!! much love friend!

thank you @squirrellyma, I am so sorry to hear what you went through with your oldest, what a horrible nurse, how dare she talk to you like that and what is she doing as a nurse she has no place to be in that position of care. Women should be supporting one another not tearing one another down, that makes me so mad, you are so vulnerable in that situation, but also at one of your most powerful but to have that taken away from you by some mean nurse, much love to you mama xxx

Yes, needless to say I refused to use that hospital again. Sad how one person can spoil something like that. I never understood why stay in a job where you're not happy at and want to make everyone around you miserable. Maybe she was just tired from working a long shift. I can't remember. But I agree with you. Thankfully I can speak up now and change that for future babies, if we decide.

It's a two fold argument really, there are a lot of single mothers out there who have to work full time jobs and take care of others kids also. They don't have time to sit around and fill bottles with breast milk for the next day. In third world countries where water is dirty the mother is still consuming that water and it's still past to the infant that way. The answer shouldn't be banning formula but finding ways towards clean water sources. It's fine when people want to make healthier choices but just because they make those choices doesn't mean everyone else should be forced into it because of a lack of knowledge or education being banned on formula products, which is what the US government had a problem with, not education or training on the benefits of breast feeding just on the ban of promoting a product. If you look at trade agreements you will see in those agreements specific language that says nothing can get in the way of globalized trade, even the environment. When the US called for restrictions on netting that was catching dolphins in the nets of tuna fisherman the world trade organization objected and won saying that it would be cost prohibitive for third world fisherman to buy the kind of equipment therefore it interfered with their rights under trade globalization treaties. So then the US went to requiring only in US waters would these nets be required, they objected again, finally after arguing back and forth about it they finally agreed that there would be no ban of imports caught with dolphins in the nets but that companies that did not catch dolphins by using different netting could place labels on the products that say dolphin free or caught dolphin free. So you see what the US did with this breast feeding issue is no different then what one of these "world order" organizations did with the tune-dolphin debate. Globalized trade is bad for the environment and it has been proven over and over, they really don't care, they have a agenda, it's set in stone, doesn't matter if the climate debate is true or not globalized trade must go on even if it brings about the demise of mankind. The US couldn't "cherry pick" the issue neither should the world health organization unless it's a life or death situation. Every woman needs to be able to determine and have the knowledge to decide that which is right for her.

I totally agree that every mother needs to make that decision and it should be an informed decision that they make, I am not out to tell any woman what to do. This was not about banning formula milk. That was not what was being discussed here, it was not part of the resolution at all, so I do not know where you got that idea from, it was all about promoting breast milk, nothing was said about banning formula milk, we all know there is a need for it.

But when you have big corporations pushing their product on women in hospital's that is not acceptable in my eyes and trying to stop much needed information/promotion from being provided is not okay. I am not surprised of course as business will always come first, but we need to stay educated and informed that is the most important thing. But what happens if that is not happening, if mothers are not able to afford the formula then the babies become malnourished because they get half measures, that is not okay. The well being of babies should always be a priority, and as mothers we should be able to access all the information we need and make those decisions ourselves. I never said formula should be banned, I accept that there is a need for it, but breast is best at the end of the day and that is a very important message that needs to be seen. As A mother our bodies provide for our children and that should not be taken away from us all for making profit x

This article is very long and in depth, it addresses just about every angle of the pros and cons of both methods, list several reasons why in some third world countries a combination of both breast feeding and formula would be the best solution for the over all well being of infants. If there was a ban, which there will not be now, formula companies can now start working with under developed countries to make formula's that are consistent with each countries diets for the best aid of infants....you have to read the whole thing to understand that and why it's crucial there is no ban.

The controversy and confusion over opinions such as these reached the scale of global conflict earlier this year when the World Health Organization (W.H.O.) voted 118 to 1 to adopt a nonbinding code restricting the promotion of infant-formula products.

The United States's lone dissenting vote was explained, in part, by Elliott Abrams, Assistant Secretary of State for International Organization Affairs (since nominated to be the Assistant Secretary of State for Human Rights). ''Despite our governmental interest in encouragement of breast-feeding,'' he said the W.H.O. recommendations for a complete ban on advertising to the general public of infant formula and the proposed restrictions on the flow of information between manufacturers and consumers ''run counter to our constitutional guarantees of free speech and freedom of information.''


This was never about banning formula milk, you must have my article confused with another, I never even suggested that and it was not part of the discussion in the assembly in May, my article is about Breastfeeding. I am 100% for women's choice in this matter and I am fully aware that there is a need for formula milk, but again this was not what my article was about.

They said there was problems with the formula companies skirting the promotion rules, they wanted a complete ban on promotion of formula not the formula itself....it can be a bit confusing. As confusing as the whole debacle making it out that the US didn't want the promotion of women to breast feed. That's not what happened. The US threat was to withdraw funds given to promote breast feeding if they did a full out ban on the promotion of formula. That didn't mean they didn't want women to breast feed which is what the headline of your article suggest.

Absolutely. I am also a huge advocate for breastfeeding and this is something so important for the child and for the mother too.
I don't understand how anyone would not breastfeed their baby, unless there are some serious health issues etc.

thanks @joalvarez for your support, it really amazes me the amount of woman that are still very much misinformed and some of the reasons also why they refuse to breastfeed, for some it is very difficult and I accept that xx

You are absolutely right!

breastfeeding, it is one of the most natural things in the world for a mother to do.

It is such an evil agenda to push for man made formula instead of breast milk from mothers, especially in these poor countries. Thank you for writing about this and bring awareness to people. This issue is totally worth fighting for.

thank you @thelaundrylady, it really is very important to promote and support breastfeeding.

This is sad but not surprising at all. The US is all about the money AND all about turning people worldwide into zombies. Of course it is not just the US but their constant push for bad stuff is just to crazy to ignore. Interesting how Russia stepped in to sponsor this campaign.

My daughter is being breastfed and has never tasted any artificial milk nor any non-human milk. She is smart and healthy unlike some of the babies around us that are going through the systems grind stones.

To me, this is not just a money issue. It is a war against consciousness and it starts with our babies.

that's the thing it is not surprising at all, how sad is that. For me it is both for money and to dis empower people, to continually attack anything natural that we have, birth, medicine, food we are fast becoming an unnatural people, so very far removed from everything that gives us strength. Women are so capable of birthing natural yet Obstetrics is the highest paid health professional in the world and don't get me started on the food we eat and the way we are being 'contained', well I should not say we as actually quiet a lot of us on here have opted out of all that, but so many others are caught in that trap and yes it starts at the very beginning with our babies whilst they are still in the womb. Cheer @flauwy

We have to make the conscious effort to obtain knowledge. All mystery teachings speak of that as path to enlightenment and to live your life with Dharma (positive Karma). With that knowledge we are able to break the spell and lift the veil.

very well said @flauwy it is our responsibility to be an stay informed x and also to listen to the knowledge that we already hold within ourselves x

So shocking and saddening. Breastfeeding is one of the most natural things in the world and now it's being taken away from those who need it most. Definitely worth fighting for xxx

Oh I know @startreat I was pretty disgusted when I read this, it is very worrying, I really hope we manage to get more info out there about the wonders of breast milk xxx

It is SHOCKING and so wrong - thank you for taking a stance on this life-changing important issue. As a child who was not breast-fed at all, I developed cancer at age 27. Our health NEEDS that important start in life!! Happy to say I nursed my daughter @nabithecat for 2 years and 3 months. :) I have personally been boycotting nestle products for 35 years over this important issue.

thank you @artemislives for your support, sorry to hear you suffered with cancer, it seems to be so common now. Well done on breastfeeding your daughter, it is such a wonderful thing to do, what a great start to life you have given her xx

ugh.. nothing is sacred in the eyes of the commercial beast.. thanks for sharing and keeping us inFORmed

thanks @eco-alex, I got to keep getting this info out there, how we birth and raise our children is so very important as we all know, but yet never really gets the attention it deserves xx

Oh God, I've been waking people up to Nestle and this very topic for years. Yes the formula manufacturers are interested in profit, but another reason is to keep our immune systems down as well as breaking the bond between Mother and Child.

Good Post Trucklife! Keep sharing the valuable information.

I know it is like taking a walk in the past they still keep trying to push there shit on mothers, and yes they definitely want to weaken us by ensuring that we are all suffering from anxiety and depression in later life, how we are born and how we are treated in those early days and months are the back bone of how we strive in life xxxx thanks for the comment @steemer-x all thing birth related is a huge passion for me xx

this is so disgusting imo! The big companies offering free milk in the beginning, just long enough for the mothers milk to dry up, then bam! Full price for feeding your child moving forward. So unethical! :( The world makes me sad...most of the time xx

I know @beautifulbullies, it really is very annoying and frustrating that this is still happening today and even worst that some mothers do not even know they value in breastmilk xxx

I heard about this yesterday! This is insane...
Its like you said, everything natural we do is coming under attack! I choose not to run to the doctor every time the kids have a cold or the flu, and people look at me like I am crazy and maybe even a neglectful parent!
I dont understand. When I was a child, staying home with the flu and recovering was totally normal, no trip to urgent-care needed.

Breastfeeding is the most healthy, natural thing on earth.
What is wrong with people???

I hear you @squishysquid, are bodies are very capable of healing themselves esp from colds and such, but so many just do not want to have to deal with symptoms and they just want a quick fix, fever is normal and helpful, suppressing it is not.
And yes breastfeeding is so natural and such a wonderful gift that our bodies create we should be celebrating that fact xx

Absolute. I agree with ya 100%.

Yes, common sense people, common sense is something precious. Hail our breasts and their capacity to feed!

hail our breasts indeed, thank you @wombloom I love what you have said xx

BREAST IS BEST!!! Ultimately they are trying to rob us of natural everything.

Wow! I wish I could say I am shocked but I am definitely appalled. Even as breastfeeding is becoming more accepted in first world countries there is also still a lot of negative attitudes towards breastfeeding. I wasn't sure how long I would last nursing my twins but here we are just over a year and going strong. I had so much support from my close friend who is a La Leche League leader, my family, my doctor, and my lactation consultant. We had so many struggles, from tongue ties to blebs but we persevered and I am glad we did.

Anyone looking for support should definitely see if there is a La Leche League group in their area.

Cheers, Aimee

I am with you in this too, to embrace our natural and beautiful design to be able to feed, nourish and bond with them with what we have, our breastmilk. It has done so much wonders for my boy, after our 33 months together. I remember when he got allergy when he was less than a year old, I am glad that breastmilk had helped to relieve him and he recovered so soon. When I was pregnant, I filled myself with only thoughts to breastfeed and I gave no room to myself to buy any formula milk, so I can persevere on, with no back up plan. It has helped me save so much money, of course and our bond is so strong that when we were weaning, I was very sad haha. Cos I was weaning too, I guess.

I truly am grateful to come across your post on how strong you stand in advocacy for breastfeeding! Good job, mama!! :)

Yes stand up for breastfeeding!! It's such a shame that the formula industry is trying to convince poor countries to buy their products this way. I am happy I knew the benefits when I started breastfeeding my baby, and that I am still breastfeeding my son now with 25 months!