Start Date

15-10-2009 4:00 PM

End Date

15-10-2009 5:15 PM

Description

Previous studies have demonstrated a strong relationship between breastfeeding practices and immigration status, length of residence, and ethnic minority. However, it remains unclear to what extent differences in these factors can be explained by cultural influences or other socio-demographic factors. Using the 2005 Canadian Community Health Survey (CCHS) data, this study investigates whether immigration status, year of residence, and visible minority status are associated with initiation and duration of exclusive breastfeeding in the context of socio-demographic factors. The findings show that while the relationship between breastfeeding and immigration process is complex, some clear, broad patterns exist that may have important theoretical and policy implications. First, immigrant mothers are more likely than their Canadian-born counterparts to have higher breastfeeding initiation and exclusive breastfeeding rates. Second, increased years of residence in Canada was associated with decreased likelihood of breastfeeding after adjusting for the socio-demographic factors, with long-time immigrants having rates of exclusive breastfeeding as low as their Canadian-born counterparts. This suggests that a substantial part of the effect of residency is channeled through other factors. Efforts are needed to encourage and support immigrant women to maintain their cultural tradition of breastfeeding as they become more acculturated in Canada.

Gebremariam Woldemicael is presently a visiting scholar at the Department of Sociology, University of Western Ontario, Canada; has over twenty years of professional work experiences in teaching and research at different Universities and institutions including Stockholm University in Sweden, the Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research in Germany, and the University of Asmara in Eritrea. With competent research and analytical skills, he has conducted extensive researches that have theoretical and policy implications in reproductive health, fertility, maternal and child health - central elements to achieving some of the Millennium Development Goals. He holds BSc in Mathematics, MSc and PhD in Demography with contact discipline in Statistics. Most of his recent research work and interests focus on: Fertility, health, and immigration; Maternal and child health; Women’s autonomy, reproductive health and preferences; and Demographic response to violent conflict.


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Oct 15th, 4:00 PM Oct 15th, 5:15 PM

Breastfeeding Practices of Immigrant Mothers in Canada: The Role of Immigration Status, Length of Residence, and Ethnic Minority

Previous studies have demonstrated a strong relationship between breastfeeding practices and immigration status, length of residence, and ethnic minority. However, it remains unclear to what extent differences in these factors can be explained by cultural influences or other socio-demographic factors. Using the 2005 Canadian Community Health Survey (CCHS) data, this study investigates whether immigration status, year of residence, and visible minority status are associated with initiation and duration of exclusive breastfeeding in the context of socio-demographic factors. The findings show that while the relationship between breastfeeding and immigration process is complex, some clear, broad patterns exist that may have important theoretical and policy implications. First, immigrant mothers are more likely than their Canadian-born counterparts to have higher breastfeeding initiation and exclusive breastfeeding rates. Second, increased years of residence in Canada was associated with decreased likelihood of breastfeeding after adjusting for the socio-demographic factors, with long-time immigrants having rates of exclusive breastfeeding as low as their Canadian-born counterparts. This suggests that a substantial part of the effect of residency is channeled through other factors. Efforts are needed to encourage and support immigrant women to maintain their cultural tradition of breastfeeding as they become more acculturated in Canada.

Gebremariam Woldemicael is presently a visiting scholar at the Department of Sociology, University of Western Ontario, Canada; has over twenty years of professional work experiences in teaching and research at different Universities and institutions including Stockholm University in Sweden, the Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research in Germany, and the University of Asmara in Eritrea. With competent research and analytical skills, he has conducted extensive researches that have theoretical and policy implications in reproductive health, fertility, maternal and child health - central elements to achieving some of the Millennium Development Goals. He holds BSc in Mathematics, MSc and PhD in Demography with contact discipline in Statistics. Most of his recent research work and interests focus on: Fertility, health, and immigration; Maternal and child health; Women’s autonomy, reproductive health and preferences; and Demographic response to violent conflict.