Home > International > Human Rights

GIFA is doing advocacy with the bodies responsible for applying international human rights treaties to ensure that breastfeeding is considered a right of both mother and child.


Breastfeeding is a right, and a woman who wishes to breastfeed must find good support and the best conditions to do so. A right does not mean an obligation to breastfeed. Society as a whole has an obligation to support breastfeeding. Breastfeeding is a human right.

Alternative reports on the state of child nutrition and breastfeeding in States parties are regularly submitted to

  • the Committee on the Rights of the Child (CRC)
  • the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW)
  • the Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (CESCR) and
  • the Universal Periodic Review (UPR).

GIFA’s aim is to persuade these bodies to issue concluding observations see here to the States Parties undergoing their periodic review, urging them to adopt and implement effective legislative measures to protect, promote and support breastfeeding and optimal infant feeding practices.

In addition, GIFA contributes to a number of consultative processes, including

GIFA also participates in the thematic discussion days of international human rights bodies, bringing its expertise to bear on issues such as the rights of children of imprisoned parents.

GIFA also works alongside other non-governmental organisations – such as FIAN International – in support of the right to adequate food, as guaranteed by

  • Article 25 § 1 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights,
  • Article 11 of the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (CESCR),
  • Article 24 letter c of the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC),
  • Article 12 § 2 of the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW).

With this in mind, we took part in the Second International Conference on Nutrition in 2014 (CIN2).

GIFA believes that companies should be held legally accountable for human rights abuses, including marketing rules designed to protect breastfeeding. GIFA is therefore an active member of the Treaty Alliance, a group of NGOs, social movements and trade unions campaigning for the adoption by the Human Rights Council of a United Nations treaty on human rights, transnational corporations and other business enterprises.

In November 2023, we celebrate the 34th anniversary of the International Convention on the Rights of the Child. To mark the occasion, we invite you to find out more about IBFAN GIFA’s work during the Committee’s sessions by clicking on the links below:

Useful links