CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY (PIA)–The Department of Health (DOH)-10 through the Regional Infant and Young Child Feeding (IYCF) Task Force in partnership with the Land Transportation and Franchising Regulatory Board (LTFRB)-10 launched the Breastfeeding-Seat Initiative in Public Buses in Northern Mindanao, August 1.
This in support of Republic Act (RA) 10028 otherwise known as the “Expanded Breastfeeding Promotion Act of 2009,” which mandates the establishment of lactation stations accessible to breastfeeding women.
DOH-10 Dr. David Mendoza shared one of the solutions to solve the problem of malnutrition is through breastfeeding saying, “Ang gatas sa nanay pinakabarato but pinakapuno sa sustansya (The mother’s milk is the cheapest but it is also the one with the best nutrients).”
Meanwhile, LTFRB Regional Director Aminoden D. Guro shared that through a resolution, all public utility bus operators are directed to reserve two full seats of the third row immediately from the driver’s seat indicated by a sticker or sign.
A penalty of P5,000 for first offense for a bus operator for refusal to provide a seat for a lactating mother, second offense, P10,000 and third offense is P15,000. There is also a possibility of cancelation or revocation of franchise if there is complaint of non-compliance with this initiative.
The bus operators who pledged their commitment include PABAMA, Bachelor Express, Bagong Lipunan, Rural Transit, and Super Five.
Further, the Regional Development Council (RDC)-10 through Resolution No. 91 (s.2020) expressed support to designate a breastfeeding seat in all buses with their inter and intra-region routes and required LTFRB to further assess the assignment of breastfeeding seats in buses and provide measures to ensure privacy of breastfeeding mothers. (JMOR/PIA-10)