SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) – New Mexico lawmakers are considering new requirements at correctional facilities that help promote the breastfeeding of infants by incarcerated mothers.
The bill from Republican Rep. Sarah Maestas Barnes and Democratic Sen. Michael Padilla is scheduled for its first committee hearing Monday.
It would require a new breastfeeding policy for all correctional facilities in the state, with provisions for women to pump and store breast milk for same-day delivery to infants or toddlers on the outside.
The state Department of Health says the bill has the potential to improve the health of especially vulnerable infants and reduce health care costs.
The New Mexico Department of Corrections says the bill could limit its discretion to interrupt the collection of breast milk during prison disturbances or out of other safety or security concerns.