What if you couldn’t afford diapers?

What if you couldn’t afford diapers?

What would you do if you had to choose between food or diapers for your child? In the United States, one in three mothers have had to make that choice.

According to The Every Little Bottom: study conducted by Abt SRBI Inc.

  • One in three mothers in the U.S. have had to cut back on essentials such as food, basic care products, and utilities like heat and electricity in order to provide diapers for their babies.
  • Mothers who cannot afford diapers report having to miss work, since most child care facilities require a day’s worth of diapers – leading to missed wages and continuing the diaper need cycle.
  • Mothers without enough diapers attempt to reuse soiled diapers, extend the time the baby is in a dirty diaper, and other measures that affect the health and well-being of the child and the mental and emotional distress of the mother.


If you think cloth diapers are the answer, you must first understand that many child-care facilities won’t deal with them, many laundromats don’t permit them, and that they have a considerably high upfront investment cost.

So, what can we do?

U.S. Rep. Rosa L. DeLauro is trying to address diaper need by introducing the Diaper Investment and Aid to Promote Economic Recovery (DIAPER) Act, which would amend the Child Care and Development Block Grant of 1990 to allow federal funding already granted to states to subsidize child care for low-income working families to be used for diapers and diapering supplies.

This bill requires NO extra money in the federal budget. It simply amends the language to make the purchase of diapers and diapering supplies an acceptable use of the existing funds.

We believe that no child, regardless of his/her family’s socioeconomic status, should ever be without diapers and no parent should have to choose between basic necessities for their child. Each one of us can do something to help.

Here’s what you can do today:

  • Support the DIAPER Act by signing this petitionfrom our friends at Help A Mother Out.
  • Find a local charity, like Baby2Baby, and donate diapers and other essentials for families in need. (We love Baby2Baby! They help almost 50,000 children annually and donated 200,000 diapers last year!)
  • Host a Diaper Drive using this tool kit.


Jessica Alba and Christopher Gavigan

Actress, mother and advocate, Jessica Alba and author, former CEO of Healthy Child Healthy World, and father, Christopher Gavigan are also Co-Founders of The Honest Company, a monthly service that delivers customized bundles of non-toxic, eco-friendly, adorable products directly to your front door.

Note: This Perspectives Blog post is written by a guest blogger of DrGreene.com. The opinions expressed on this post do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Dr. Greene or DrGreene.com, and as such we are not responsible for the accuracy of the information supplied. View the license for this post.

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