Villiers welcomes success for petition to save breastfeeding service in Barnet

Breastfeeding support services for new mothers will carry on in Barnet in a move that has been welcomed by Chipping Barnet MP Theresa Villiers, who had lobbied for the continued funding of the service.

Local people had expressed concern when news emerged that Barnet Council’s contract with the service provider, CLCH, was due to come to an end in February and there was uncertainty about whether the service would continue. An online petition attracted more than 1000 signatures and coverage in the national media.

Theresa met concerned mums who wanted the service retained and she raised the issue with Barnet Council. Cllr Alison Cornelius, chair of the borough’s Health Overview and Scrutiny Committee took up the case. The Council have now confirmed that breastfeeding support services will continue. They have announced a two-year extension of the contract with CLCH. They will also carry out a review of breastfeeding support in the borough to better understand the services needed by local families. This will report to the Health Overview and Scrutiny Committee.

“It’s excellent news that this much-valued service for new mothers will now continue. The success of the petition showed that local people value breastfeeding support services. I was happy to work with constituents, Alison Cornelius and Barnet Council to find a solution. It is great that the Council has listened the concerns expressed and found a way to continue to fund the service,” said Theresa.

“Breastfeeding has very important health benefits. Having expert advice and support in the crucial first few weeks of motherhood helps improve breastfeeding rates locally.”