Florida prevention initiative concludes activities, celebrates successes

After two years of working with local communities and agencies, the Florida Communities Putting Prevention to Work initiative has concluded, with numerous victories that make it easier for school district employees to breastfeed, provide kids safe routes to school and limit tobacco smoking in public places.

The Florida Department of Health received funding in 2010 from the American Recovery and Investment Act to focus on three public health areas through the CPPW initiative: increase physical activity through Walking School Bus (WSB) programs in schools, promote lactation support at work, and create more tobacco-free public facilities.

Since its inception, 38 breastfeeding policies were implemented at school districts within the two-year period (including in Clay, Nassau and Baker counties in Northeast Florida), five school district wellness policies gained language supporting safe routes to school and/or Walking School Bus and more than 3,400 tobacco free signs were placed in about 50 city and county parks statewide.

In Northeast Florida: 

  • Duval County was one of several that participated in a regional Walk and Bike to School Day. 
  • Nassau County became the 27th school district to pass a lactation policy, but took it one step farther by receiving a grant to buy supplies. The county now has three refurbished pumps and three room dividers for privacy.
  • Clay County passed a lactation policy in June 2011, while Baker County passed a policy in June 2012.