Mothers face jail sentence for refusing to breastfeed
Women who refuse to breastfeed their newly-born babies may face jail sentence for denying their children’s right.
Article 128 of the 2009 law on health stipulates that babies have the right to six months of exclusive breast milk unless their mothers could not fulfill their obligation due to medical problems.
Article 200 of the draft says a mother who declines to exclusively breast feed their children will face a maximum of one year in prison term or Rp 100 million in fine.
Law expert Prof. Sarsintorini Putra said Tuesday people, including employers, who prevent women from breastfeeding their children would also face punishments. The law says employers that do not support the exclusive breastfeeding movement will be imprisoned or fined.
The law, however, will not come into effect sometime in the near future due to the absence of implementing government regulations.
Passed by the House of Representatives on Oct. 13, 2009, the law will only be enforced on Oct. 13, 2010.