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NC kids in adult jails?!?

We are at a pivotal moment to change the lives of kids in communities across our state. North Carolina is one of only two states in the country that still charges 16- and 17-year-olds as adults in our criminal justice system, without exception. We can change this outdated policy, but we need your help!
Right now in North Carolina, any 16- or 17-year-old who makes one bad decision and is charged with even the most minor offense—like stealing a candy bar—is housed in an adult jail, where they face an increased risk of suicide and sexual assault. They are also branded with a criminal record that will make it harder for them to go to college, find a job, and contribute to society—putting North Carolina's young people at a competitive disadvantage compared to youth in other states.
Luckily, the North Carolina Commission on the Administration of Law and Justice, a group formed by N.C.

This Mom's Perspective: Breastfeeding and Child-Led Weaning

It is August and that means National Breastfeeding Month. My boys are now 19 and 22, and I have shared a bit of our breastfeeding journey in a magazine or two many, many years ago. But not the whole story, as back then, we were still breastfeeding. I have been hesitant about sharing, as I know breastfeeding is one of those hot parenting topics about which many disagree. And I know there will be negative comments, even though this is our experience. So here it goes anyway. Time to share.

When I was growing up, my mom did not breastfeed us. It was a generation of bottle feeding and breastfeeding would have been way outside the norm in her circles and also way outside her comfort zone. So I never had really ANY experiences with breastfeeding mothers, positive or negative. It just was what it was, I supported breastfeeding mothers as a nurse and that seemed just part of my job like anything else. 

Live. Love. Nurse. #BlackBFJoy

Breastfeeding was something that I knew I wanted to do since I was a little girl. I remember Mami nursing my baby sister (we're 19 months apart). Her cocoa skin was radiant and beautiful. Her afro was EVERAAAAAYTHAAANG! Mere mortals couldn't dare compare to her. Thank you for being my inspiration and the embodiment of motherhood, Mami. La quiero mucho.

Now for the nitty gritty. 

To be able to nourish your child with your perfectly made food is an incredible feeling. Unfortunately, everybody doesn't share the same the sentiment. Folks will give their unsolicited opinions and their negativity to a natural process which, by the way, is embraced by the rest of the world. I guess American boobs must be dipped in fairy dust because apparently they should be worshipped and not be used as nature intended.

I am cursed. I've no poker face, filter or fux for most topics but breastfeeding seemed to bring out the the nasty with an extra side of petty. Stay with me. Finds that a Majority of Americans Want Subsidized Child Care

I remember the day I realized I couldn’t afford the day care center I wanted.

They had baby yoga and a curriculum I coveted. But the annual cost would have crippled our family. “The annual cost is more than your take home pay,” my husband said looking at the center’s application. The more affordable center had a waitlist of over a year, and ultimately, we had to create a patchwork plan of family and a part-time nanny until we could get off the list.

And though I never received infant art projects, it was ultimately a great experience, full of loving people.

That was 8 years ago. And my husband and I had no idea that child care would start consuming SO much of our household income.

Today, we have three children, a nanny, pre-school, camp and afterschool expenses. We join the 54% of families who told that they spend more than 10% of their household income on child care as well as the 3/5 families who ask themselves “WHERE IS ALL THE MONEY GOING?”. This data is from’s third annual Cost of Care survey, which found that in order to pay for care, families have:

·       Saved less money (50%)

#Radio This Week: Your Voice, Your Vote

From the Fight for $15 to breaking down barriers to breastfeeding for moms in the military, from ending wage discrimination to getting access to affordable childcare and paid family leave, people across the country are standing up, making their voices heard, and building a better nation for everyone.
*Special guests include: 

Representation Matters: Why I'll Show Mom-to-Be My Imperfect Boobs #BBW16

“Right here?” I stuttered.

“Yeah. Why not?”

To my left, my father-in-law was enjoying a plate of scrambled eggs. To my right, my husband was cutting up a waffle for my daughter. I looked down at my 4-day old baby boy. I smoothed my thumb over his tiny fisted hand and took a deep breath. In front of me, my mother glared at me.

The pressure. So much pressure.

Between my throbbing uterus, sore nipples and onslaught of postpartum emotions, I was finding that eating out with the family just days after I had given birth just wasn’t a good idea.

“I’m going to go to the car.”

“You sure?” my husband asked through sips of coffee.

“Yeah.” I said. “I’ll be fine.”

I grabbed the baby bag, gently plopped my baby in the carrier and made my way out of the restaurant. Tears flooded my eyes and I angry texted my best friend as I made my way through the car in the crisp November air.

I was failing at breastfeeding in public and I was mad about it.

On Women’s Equality Day, Still Fighting for Voting Rights for All

Perhaps a million women will be left on the sidelines as we celebrate 96 years of voting rights this Women’s Equality Day.

These are women affected by felony disenfranchisement laws – state laws that deny individuals convicted of felony offenses the right to vote while they are incarcerated, while they are on probation or parole, and in some cases for the rest of their lives.

In 2004, an estimated that 792,200 women could not vote because of felony disenfranchisement laws. This is up from 676,700 in 2000. At this rate of increase, at least one million women would likely be affected today.

Because race and poverty play such key roles in determining who is arrested, prosecuted, convicted, and incarcerated, it is no surprise that African American women are four times more likely than other women to have had their voting right taken away. This is a sad coda to the vital roles that African American women played in securing the right to vote.

MomsRising Calls Mylan’s Announcement It Will Provide Coupons to Offset EpiPen Price Increase ‘Inadequate and Cynical’

“In the wake of public outcry and the threat of a U.S. Senate investigation, Mylan today announced that it won’t actually LOWER the cost of its lifesaving EpiPens, but will offer a discount coupon to some purchasers. Given that the company has increased the cost of this crucial medication 450 percent in the last three years, and the epinephrine itself costs a dollar to manufacture, this move is wholly inadequate and incredibly cynical. Mylan will still reap outrageous profits overcharging for a medication that many people need to survive.

“I come to this issue not only as the head of an organization that fights for moms and their families, but as the mother of a son who has life-threatening anaphylactic allergies to foods. We always keep two EpiPens on hand for him in case there’s any accidental cross-contamination of food. I was stunned when I went to the pharmacy to purchase two more and learned that the out-of-pocket cost is $730.

Black Breastfeeding Week: Celebrating the Joy Of Black Moms Who Breastfeed

Originally posted over at My Brown Baby but Black Breastfeeding Week has me too happy to stay on just one website.

Happy Black Breastfeeding Week!

Say, look here: I wish to good Gawd up above that there was a gang of Black mom warriors in my corner when I was breastfeeding my babies more than seventeen years ago. Here's what I faced off against: judgmental aunties who just couldn't get over the fact that I had "them babies sucking on your ninny" for a year; judgmental strangers giving me the side-eye for refusing to breastfeed in public bathrooms; judgmental coworkers who were perfectly fine with me pumping in my hot ass car on a New York City street rather than creating a dedicated space so that I could pump without an audience; and barely any sustained support from fellow moms who chose to formula feed their children, as if my decision to breastfeed was some kind of indictment on their decision not to.

Wellness Wednesday Recap: Surgeon's General Call to Action On Breastfeeding #RisersNBM16

We are rounding the corner around the last week of National Breastfeeding Month! This week, our tweetstorm focused on the Surgeon General's call to action on breastfeeding, stats and lots of information. Did you miss it? That's okay! Here's the recap.


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