August 1st-7th Declared Breastfeeding Week in Indiana

indiana state department of health
INDIANAPOLIS—Thursday, August 1 begins World Breastfeeding Week, a global initiative to raise awareness of the benefits of breastfeeding and celebrate the efforts of all who embrace breastfeeding as the cultural norm. In conjunction with the worldwide celebration, Governor Pence has declared August 1-7 as Breastfeeding Week in Indiana. 
"Breastfeeding protects babies by providing the ultimate infant nutrition," said Joan Duwve, M.D., Chief Medical Officer at the Indiana State Department of Health. "Breastfeeding Week is a great way for Hoosiers to recognize the value and importance of breastfeeding and demonstrate support for breastfeeding moms."  
Breastfeeding promotes overall health, growth and development of infants. It reduces infant mortality by protecting the infant against infectious diseases and has been shown to lower the risk of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS). Breastfeeding also reduces the risk of developing asthma, obesity, diabetes and other diseases in childhood and later adulthood. And the physical contact of breastfeeding provides comfort and security to infants.  
Mothers benefit from breastfeeding too. Breastfeeding provides a quiet time for mothers to bond with their babies and decreases the risk of postpartum depression. Breastfeeding is also economical because there is no formula to buy and healthier babies mean fewer visits to the doctor. In addition, breastfeeding has been shown to decrease the risk of ovarian and breast cancer, as well as type 2 diabetes.   
National estimates suggest that if 90 percent of U.S. babies were breastfed exclusively for six months, nearly 1,000 infant deaths would be prevented, and the nation would save $13 billion per year in health care costs. 
World Breastfeeding Week is celebrated internationally August 1-7 each year. This year’s theme, “Breastfeeding Support: Close to Mothers,” highlights the importance of support for breastfeeding mothers from others such as family, friends and breastfeeding peer counselors. 
The Breastfeeding Week proclamation will be read by Dr. Duwve at the Indianapolis 2013 Big Latch On, an event hosted by Indy Breastfeeding Moms that will attempt to break the World Record for the most women breastfeeding simultaneously. The official “latch on” begins at 10:30 a.m. on August 3 at the Rivera Club in Indianapolis. Several Big Latch On events will take place around the state. For more information and to register, visit
For more information on breastfeeding or to see a copy of the Breastfeeding Week proclamation, visit Follow the Indiana State Department of Health on Twitter at @StateHealthIN and on Facebook at
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Portage PD Seek Help to Find Armed Robbery Suspects

portage pd
Portage Police are seeking the public's assistance in locating three black male suspects being sought in the armed robbery of a tobacco store on Sunday evening. Police report an investigation found two of the three suspects had ties to Gary, but while neither suspects could be located, authorities were able to find the vehicle used in the robbery. Anyone who knows the whereabouts of 42 year old Garland Jeffers Jr. and 49 year old Roscoe McClendon is asked to contact Detective Captain Joe Reynolds at (219) 762-3122. Police say a third unknown suspect is also being sought. No one was injured in the armed robbery that took place in the 34-hundred block of Willowcreek Road, in which the suspects reportedly stole cigarettes and cash.
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Recalled Ground Beef in Indiana

A Kansas company has recalled approximately 50-thousand pounds of ground beef that may be contaminated with E. coli. The U.S. Department of Agriculture says no illnesses have been reported linked to consumption of the meat, which was produced by National Beef Packing Company of Liberal, Kansas. The beef was sold in 40 to 60 pound cases to retailers, wholesalers, and food service distributors nationwide including IGA and Cash Saver stores in Indiana
From USDA:


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New Dune Park Platform to Open

The east portion of a new high-level boarding platform at the busy Dune Park South Shore station at US 12 and State Road 49 in Chesterton is opening this month. Northern Indiana Commuter Transportation District officials say the new platform will let passengers board the trains without having to climb stairs, which will be especially helpful for those with disabilities, the elderly, and families with strollers. It's also expected to reduce station "dwell time," the time a train needs to be at the station to serve passengers, taking a couple minutes off the stop. The four-million dollar project includes warming shelters and an overhead canopy that'll run the full length of the platform.

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Fmr Ind School Chief Bennett Resigns Fla Post

Former Indiana state schools chief Tony Bennett this morning resigned his position as education commissioner in Florida after a school grading controversy stemming from his tenure as state school superintendent in Indiana. Bennett said Florida schools "don't deserve this distraction" and says he was urged by the chairman of the Florida Board of Education to stay on. It follows allegations reported by the Associated Press that Bennett changed the grade of a charter school run by a key Republican donor.  Bennett today described the reports as "malicious" and "unfounded". He defended the grading saying a statistical anomaly was found that did not allow not just one but thirteen schools have their grade "truly reflect their performance,"  and said he would formally request Indiana's inspector general investigate this issue, saying he is "fearless about what they will find."

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Illinois Gov to Sign Medical Marijuana Bill

Today, Illinois becomes the latest state to legalize marijuana. Illinois Governor Pat Quinn is set to sign legislation that will make Illinois the twentieth state in the country to legalize marijuana for medical use. Quinn is expected to set some of the toughest standards in the nation for how the drug is distributed. Patients and caregivers will have to undergo background checks and marijuana dispensaries will be regulated by the state. Patients will be allowed to buy up to two and half ounces at a time. The measure lists by name forty-two illnesses or diseases that patients would have to be seeking treatment for including cancer, HIV, aids, and ALS .

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Gov Pence to Remember USS Indianapolis

Indiana Governor Mike Pence will join survivors of the USS Indianapolis in Indianapolis tonight to commemorate the 68th Anniversary of the ship's sinking. The World War Two ship was sunk by torpedoes in shark-infested waters of the Pacific July 30, 1945, after a classified mission related to delivering parts for the first atomic bomb dropped on Japan. Nearly nine-hundred of the 12-hundred on board died.

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Two Big Presentations at NIRPC Committee

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State environmental officials will be in the Region today to present the results of the Lakeshore Air Toxics Study. The Indiana Department of Environmental Management analysis evaluated air monitoring data and performed modeling of industrial, car and truck emissions in Northwest Indiana to assess potential health risks.
Also at today's NIRPC Environmental Committee meeting this morning... the Indiana Department of Transportation is returning as a followup to an overview presentation in May, when committee members had a number of questions about water-related impacts of the proposed Illiana Expressway.  Meeting is at 9 am.
More info from NIRPC:
Jeffrey Stoakes, Senior Environmental Manager with the Office of Air Quality at the Indiana Department of Environmental Management will present the results of the Lakeshore Air Toxics Study. This study was introduced at EMPC in May of 2012. The study evaluated ambient air monitoring data and performed modeling of industrial, car, and truck emissions within Northwest Indiana to assess potential health risks.
In addition, Jim Earle of the Indiana Department of Transportation (INDOT) will return to EMPC as a follow up to an overview presentation in May of this year. “The EMPC members had numerous questions about water related impacts of the proposed Illiana expressway,” said Kathy Luther, NIRPC Director of Environmental Programs, “I’m pleased that the Illiana team requested an opportunity to come back and address these concerns.”
The Environmental Management and Policy Committee (EMPC) is one of the primary advisory bodies to NIRPC. The group includes elected local officials, environmental managers, regional environmental activists, industry leaders, and academics with expertise in environmental and ecological areas.

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Gary Leaders Seek Answers to Violence

City and community leaders in Gary continue to search for ways to combat crime. At a meeting of the Gary Public Safety Committee Wednesday, Gary Police Chief Wade Ingram stressed the importance of economic development and jobs as part of the solution. He also said he is hoping to hire ten to eleven additional officers in the next few weeks and is planning another gun turn-in August 24th.  Mayor Karen Freeman-Wilson has asked the Governor for State Police to assist the city in fighting the recent surge in violence, a request Governor Pence is currently reviewing.  A man shot and killed Tuesday morning marked the 33rd homicide in the city of Gary this year.  Wednesday morning police say a 63-year-old Gary man was shot and wounded in a carjacking when he stopped to check on his tire at 5th and Wabash.

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NIPSCO Earns 2013 Energy Star Housing Awward

MERRILLVILLE, Ind. – Northern Indiana Public Service Company (NIPSCO) is pleased to announce that it has been recognized by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) with a 2013 ENERGY STAR® Leadership in Housing Award. This award recognizes the contribution NIPSCO has made to energy-efficient construction and environmental protection.
Created in 2008, NIPSCO’s Residential New Construction Program offers incentives to local builders and developers who construct homes to ENERGY STAR standards. To earn the ENERGY STAR label, a home must meet strict guidelines for energy efficiency set by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. These homes are up to 30 percent more efficient than typical new homes built today.
Together, families living in ENERGY STAR certified homes saved nearly $626 million on their utility bills and avoided greenhouse gas emissions equivalent to those of more than 686,000 vehicles last year alone.
Since NIPSCO’s Residential New Construction Program began, 1,527 homes across northern Indiana have earned incentives. Nationwide, more than 1.4 million ENERGY STAR certified homes have been built to date, with more than 100,000 constructed in 2012.
“We thank ENERGY STAR for recognizing NIPSCO’s efforts to help our customers build efficient homes,” said Victoria Vrab, director of conservation programs for NIPSCO. “Together with local builders we are helping encourage the adoption of energy-saving features, including insulation and duct sealing systems, high performance windows and efficient heating and cooling equipment that will help our customers achieve long-term energy savings.”
Additional energy efficiency programs
In addition to the Residential New Construction Program, NIPSCO customers have access to a wide range of energy efficiency programs which can help them identify ways to manage energy usage at home and the office, including:
·        Residential Energy Efficiency Rebate Program: Save even more when you replace old, inefficient equipment with new, high efficiency natural gas and electric equipment as well as insulation and duct sealing.
·        Energy Efficiency Incentives for Businesses, Schools: Businesses and organizations of all size can take advantage of rebates and other incentives on renovation and new construction projects.
·        Home Energy Assessment: Learn how you can raise your home’s performance, lower energy bills and improve in-home air quality with an in-home assessment.
·        Appliance Recycling Program: Recycle your old refrigerator or freezer with us – it’s free and we’ll give you a $35 reward.
·        Air Conditioner (AC) Cycling Program: Help reduce energy demand on the hottest days of the year and earn bill credits during the summer.
·        Instant Savings on CFL Bulbs: Take advantage of instant, in-store discounts when purchasing CFL bulbs at participating retail locations. No coupons or forms needed.
A full list of energy efficiency programs available to NIPSCO customers can be found at
ENERGY STAR was introduced by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency in 1992 as a voluntary market-based partnership to reduce greenhouse gas emissions through increased energy efficiency. Today, ENERGY STAR offers businesses and consumers energy-efficient solutions to save energy, money and help protect the environment for future generations. For more information about ENERGY STAR, visit or call toll-free 1-888-STAR-YES (1-888-782-7937).
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Laura-WLJE Scott-WLJE Brent-WLJE
Region News Team
Region News Team
Region News Team
Region News Team
Region News Team
Region News Team


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