New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, already the center of much debate concerning his proposed ban on large soft drinks, now is pushing hospitals to keep baby formula locked up on maternity wards so more new mothers will breast-feed.
About 27 of New York's 40 hospitals have already joined Bloomberg's "Latch On" campaign, agreeing to "begin taking steps to encourage moms to nurse their newborns." WNYC, New York's public radio station, said the hospitals will store the baby formula under "lock-and-key, like other medications," so nurses won't give out the formula so readily.
"I think most public health officials want to encourage women to breast-feed for the first couple weeks, because the outcomes are better," said Bloomberg.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the World Health Organization encourage nursing over bottle-feeding, but critics say the mayor is intruding on people's personal lives.