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World Alliance for Breastfeeding Action (WABA)
Gender Working Group

WABA is a global network of individuals and organizations concerned with the protection, promotion & support of breastfeeding worldwide. WABA action is based on the Innocenti Declaration, the Ten Links for Nurturing the Future and the Global Strategy for Infant & Young Child Feeding. WABA is in consultative status with UNICEF & an NGOin Special Consultative Status with the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations (ECOSOC).

On 1 December 2007, World AIDS Day, WABA issued a press release entitled “KEEP THE PROMISE TO HIV-POSITIVE MOTHERS AND THEIR BABIES.” A key message from that document:

“Political will and strong leadership are needed to reverse the decade-long erosion of breastfeeding accompanying the global PMTCT effort. Characterization of formula-feeding as a safe infant feeding option can no longer be justified; contamination of powdered infant formula can occur intrinsically from raw materials, during manufacture or from extrinsic sources.15 16 Its cost has been very high in terms of infant malnutrition and mortality, and in displacement of funding away from treatment for HIV-positive mothers. Rational and humane strategies are needed to simultaneously:

  • improve the health and survival of HIV-infected women,
  • lift the burden of an impossible choice from mothers as they contemplate how best to feed their babies,
  • prevent transmission of HIV to exposed.”