HELP US END MASS INCARCERATION The Prison Policy Initiative uses research, advocacy, and organizing to dismantle mass incarceration. We’ve been in this movement for 20 years, thanks to individual donors like you.

Can you help us sustain this work?

Thank you,
Peter Wagner, Executive Director
Donate
Bar chart showing that in prisons with policies allowing breast milk expression, only 8 women out of 55 postpartum women are actively lactating in an average month. In jails included in the study, only an average of 6 out of 22 postpartum women were actively lactating in a given month.

Data Source: Created by the Prison Policy Initiative based on data from Asidou, Beal, and Sufrin (2021), Breastfeeding in Incarcerated Settings in the United States: A National Survey of Frequency and Policies, Breastfeeding Medicine. (Graph: Wendy Sawyer, 2021)

This graph originally appeared in Unsupportive environments and limited policies: Pregnancy, postpartum, and birth during incarceration.

Findings from Asidou et al.’s Breastfeeding in Incarcerated Settings highlight a lack of support for lactation, which might explain why there were so many more postpartum women than women who were actively lactating. While mothers can choose to stop breastfeeding or lactating for a number of reasons, stopping breast milk production suddenly due to jail or prison policy is almost guaranteed to be a painful process that may bring on other medical issues, like mastitis.

Stay Informed

Get the latest updates:


And our other newsletters:







Stay Informed


Get the latest updates:



Tweet this page Donate