Breastfeeding Behind Bars

June 7, 2018

by Monica Esparza, Deputy Director, NMBTF In August 2017, NM District 1 Court ruled that breastfeeding is a constitutional right under the NM Equal Rights Amendment and held that NM Corrections Dept must allow inmate mothers to breastfeed during in-person visitations and must allow inmate mothers to use an electric breast pump to express milk while they are separated from their child (Hidalgo v NMCD). In Spring 2018, Bernalillo County Metropolitan Detention Center officially released their Breastfeeding Support Program policy. Over the last year, five inmate mothers/baby dads have received breastfeeding support. Support for mothers in the corrections system has been…

Hacking Traditional Native Regalia for Easier Breastfeeding

May 2, 2018

When we heard about the MIT’s Make the Breast Pump Not Suck Hackathon, we knew we needed to represent New Mexico. Knowing the importance of breastfeeding in reproductive justice, we approached Rachael Lorenzo of Indigenous Women Rising to organize a team. Along with Malia Luarkie (Laguna Pueblo and an organizer with Indigenous Women Rising), Marya Errin Jones (ABQ Zine Fest), and Monica Esparza (NM Breastfeeding Task Force), Rachael organized an intimate community gathering of Pueblo women who wanted to share their past breastfeeding experiences. With the ultimate goal of making traditional dresses more breastfeeding-friendly, the discussion included stigma against teenage parenting…

From Anger to Action

April 4, 2018

by Lissa Knudsen, Board Chair Growing up with a veterinarian father and on 21 rural acres, I had the opportunity to spend a lot of time around nursing foals, lambs, and litters of puppies, and kittens as a child. I didn’t think much of it at the time, but that and knowing that my own mother breastfed me for 11 months (which is pretty amazing given that I was born in 1974 when breastfeeding in the US was it’s all-time lowest) meant that I grew up expecting I would breastfeed my own baby. My mom and I are very tightly…

Breastfeeding is healthy for mothers, babies

August 1, 2017

Las Crucen Stacie Justus, 28, always knew that she wanted to breastfeed. “It’s something my mom did for both me and my sister and I wanted to do that for my kid, too,” Justus said. Justus now has the opportunity to experience breastfeeding with her daughter Sawyer, who was just 7 weeks old at the end of June. So far, Justus said the experience has been good. However, there have been a couple challenges, such as oversupply (producing too much breast milk) and trouble getting Sawyer to latch on to feed. But the key is patience, Justus said. READ MORE

Legislative Roundup

May 4, 2017

New Mexico women could use Medicaid to pay for lactation consultants under a bill advanced by the House Health and Human Services Committee this week. Read more

The Many Benefits of Breastfeeding

September 19, 2015

By EMILY GUERRA  September 12, 2015 – Las Cruces, NM – On this edition of PUENTES, bridges to the community, Emily Guerra meets with New Mexico Breastfeeding Task Force Registered Nurse & Board Certified Lactation Consultant, Kimberly Smetzer, and Breastfeeding Counselor, Suzanne Staley, to bring awareness of the many benefits breastfeeding provides for your baby READ MORE

Kimberly Smetzer and Marisol Kearny: Local hospitals, employers support nursing mothers

September 3, 2015

As local health-care practitioners and members of the New Mexico Breastfeeding Task Force, we felt it was important to celebrate National Breastfeeding Month by outlining some of the exciting developments happening both here in Las Cruces and in southern New Mexico in the effort to ensure all breastfeeding families feel supported. Read More

Advocates Say New Moms Need Workplace Support To Breastfeed

September 3, 2015

By: Marisa Demarco It’s World Breastfeeding Week, and proponents are looking at how New Mexico treats new mothers. Read More

Public Health New Mexico: Nursing A Shift In Culture

September 3, 2015

By: Marisa Demarco Moms and hospitals around the state are working to figure out what can be done to support breastfeeding. It’s all about re-normalizing an ancient and intimate exchange of nutrition in the United States today.  Read More

Public Health New Mexico: Baby-Friendly Hospitals In N.M.

September 3, 2015

There are 30 hospital facilities with maternity care units across the state. Eight have been deemed baby-friendly, and four of those are part of Indian Health Services. “That’s a designation that shows a huge commitment and takes years to achieve—huge culture shift within the hospital systems,” says Erin Marshall, baby-friendly hospital project director with the New Mexico Breastfeeding Task Force. Read More