One major retailer is trying to make life easier for nursing moms.
Target says it’s intentionally carving out a place for moms to breastfeed in all stores, to make sure everyone feels welcomed and valued, television station WJRT in Flint, Michigan reported.
Shonte Terhune-Smith, a breastfeeding advocate in Genesee County, said Target’s breastfeeding plan should light a fire under some other big organizations and retail stores as current accommodations for nursing moms are “barely passing.”
If she were to grade the current nursing mom accommodations, Terhune-Smith said she would give “about a C-minus.”
Terhune-Smith, who is also the founder of You Overcoming Lactation Obstacles in Genesee County, said she applauds Target for trying to help.
“We are here for you. You can shop here and feel like there’s a place, a safe space for you here and to me that’ll challenge other major organizations to step up and do the same,” Terhune-Smith said told the TV station.
In a statement to WJRT, Target said guests are welcome to breastfeed in public areas of the store and said stores will, “Be adding nursing spaces to make shopping at Target even easier for new moms.”
Terhune-Smith, who is also an international board certified lactation consultant, said she has seen positive changes locally in Flint, too.
Sloan Museum is a popular family destination that is nursing-friendly, for example. She believes the message is a positive one, not only for nursing moms, but for moms to be.
“If we can start changing the narrative, just making it more – awareness for everybody and how they can support the mom even with their own biases, I think we can increase breastfeeding rates. We can increase…the young mom who might not see it as something she can do in public, but she sees it as – these people support me now,” Terhune-Smith said.
Below is the complete Target’s statement:
“At Target, we want all of our guests to feel like they belong at Target by being welcomed, valued and respected. Our breastfeeding policy, which applies to all stores, is just one of the ways in which we support our guests. Guests who choose to breastfeed in public areas of the store are welcome to do so. And as we remodel stores across the country, we’ll be adding nursing spaces to make shopping at Target even easier for new moms. Additionally, our store teams continuously listen to guest feedback and are empowered to find ways to make shopping at Target easy and inspiring for guests.”