child care facilities in the workplace steering committee september 2009 l.
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Child Care Facilities in the Workplace Steering Committee September 2009. Breastfeeding and work. Content. GOAL MANDATE WORK-LIFE BALANCE BREASTFEEDING BREASTFEEDING FRIENDLY ENVIRONMENT WHERE TO START DPSA PLAN DISCUSSION. GOAL.

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  • GOAL
  • To develop guidelines in 2009/10 financial year on Child Care Facilities for Public Service employees
  • It is envisaged that these guidelines will be implemented by departments in 2010/2011
  • Child Care Facilities

Day care




  • In South Africa there is no legal requirement regarding child care facilities in the workplace
  • The Constitution of South Africa Chapter 10: Bill of Rights states that “Every person has the right to health services and a healthy and safe working environment”.
  • Occupational Health and Safety Act (1996) Government should provide a safe and healthy environment
  • Cabinet Lekgotla 2008 – Implementation of SHERQ Policy – improve working environment
  • Employee Health and Wellness (EHW) Strategic Framework For Public Service 2008
  • Wellness Management - Work-life Balance
  • Child care facilities to accommodate child-care concerns such as breast feeding, day care etc.
work life balance

2nd National Gender Indaba 2009

  • The recognition of the reproductive and productive roles of women calls for a departure from the non-flexible human resources practices, culture and procedures
  • Creating an environment where both men and women are able to reconcile the public and the private activities is a necessary step for the transformation of the gender relations
work life balance9
  • The 2007 Public Service Commission Report indicates that very little has been introduced in the Public Service to create a family-friendly work environment
  • When the high percentage of working women in reproductive years is considered it becomes extremely important for the Public Service to develop supporting facilities in the workplace to address their needs and to improve productivity


WHO recommends exclusive breastfeeding for at least 6 months, and with solid foods from 6 months- breastfeeding for at least one year

UNICEF recommends that breastfeeding is the nutrition of choice for all babies wherever they are born. HIV positive mothers should be encouraged to breastfeeding for up to two years (

  • WHO and UNICEF have initiated the Global Strategy for Infant and Young Child Feeding- calls on governments to protect the rights of working women to breastfeed
  • In South Africa and Zimbabwe, Ivory Coast, transmission rates reduced by 3-4 times when mothers exclusively breastfed compared to mixed feeding
  • In the absence of workplace support for breastfeeding many new mothers may decide not to return to work following maternity leave/parental leave
  • The introduction of workplace policies and provisions to support breastfeeding may positively influence new mothers’ workforce participation
  • It is generally recognised that organisations that recognise and support diversity potentially benefit from a range of skills and experience
benefits for infants mothers and families
Benefits for Infants, Mothers and Families
  • Reduces the risk of infectious disease such as, meningitis, gastro-enteritis, respiratory and ear infections
  • Reduces the risk of food allergy
  • May reduce the risk of sudden infant death syndrome
  • For mothers, the benefits include increased protection against: breast cancer, ovarian cancer, osteoporosis
  • Enhanced bonding with their offspring etc.


benefits to employer
Benefits to employer
  • Work-life balance programs such as a flexible workplace policy will ensure that employees will be more engaged at work, exhibit greater commitment to their employers, and view the workplace as supportive
  • Easier transition back to work following maternity leave
  • Retaining valuable employee skills and experience and lessening recruitment and retraining costs
benefits to employer15
Benefits to employer
  • Lower employee absenteeism rates on account of improved child health
  • Improved employer-employee relations and greater employee loyalty
  • Enhanced employee morale and productivity
  • Improved company image
breastfeeding friendly workplaces
Breastfeeding-Friendly Workplaces
  • Enable breastfeeding employees to gradually phase-in to the workplace following leave, including through flexible hours (including starting and finishing times around core working hours), job sharing, and part-time work
  • Offer employees the option of working from home, where appropriate
breastfeeding friendly workplaces17
Breastfeeding-Friendly Workplaces
  • Establish clean facilities for breastfeeding/breast milk expression
  • Permit the infant to be brought into the workplace to be breastfed, where appropriate
  • Develop and implement a workplace policy on breastfeeding. Ensure that all staff are made aware of this policy
breastfeeding friendly workplaces18
Breastfeeding-Friendly Workplaces
  • Educate key personnel, including managers, supervisors and HR personnel, about supporting and respecting the needs of breastfeeding workers
  • The employer might also consider sponsoring/subsidising childcare and providing assistance with finding nearby childcare
breastfeeding friendly workplaces19
Breastfeeding-Friendly Workplaces
  • Facilities to support breastfeeding/breast milk expression in the workplace include:
    • A clean and private room (not a bathroom, toilet or closet) or a screened area in which mothers can either express breast milk or breastfeed their infants.
    • A table (on which to place a breast pump)
    • A comfortable chair
    • One or two electrical outlets for electric breast pumps
breastfeeding friendly workplaces20
Breastfeeding-Friendly Workplaces
  • Sink with running water to wash hands and breast pump equipment
  • A small refrigerator (although breast milk can be stored in a container with blue ice or safely stored at room temperatures for up to 8 hours if refrigeration is unavailable)
  • Small lockable cupboard (for employees needing to store breast pumps and milk collection equipment).
  • Appropriate, accurate and current information folder
where to start
Where to start?

Survey/ consult your employees, especially those that do not return to work after pregnancy- their views and experiences may surprise you!

Find out what managers/ co-workers need to know to support mothers to be

Test out providing lactation support/ equipment

Cost- Benefit analysis- it will repay your efforts!

dpsa plans 2009 10
DPSA PLANS 2009/10
  • Conduct desktop research
  • Coordinate Consultation meetings and workshops with possible partners and departments
  • Develop and distribute questionnaires
  • Conduct a needs/ cost/ benefit analysis in the public service
  • Communicate findings to departments and partners
  • Develop draft guidelines
  • Consult on draft on various levels
  • Launch the guidelines at the EH&W Indaba
  • Implementation 2010/11
dpsa plans 2009 1023
DPSA PLANS 2009/10
  • Questionnaire
    • Type of physical facilities and services
    • Support for facilities at work
    • Importance of breast feeding
    • Knowledge about breast milk expression
    • Flexible working hours
    • Breaks to breast feed Policy
    • Benefits
    • Learning program
    • Perceptions/ experiences
    • Returning to work
    • Communication / Information