Brown Building now home to new lactation pod Published Jan. 12, 2023 By Lauren Russell 66th Air Base Group Public Affairs HANSCOM AIR FORCE BASE, Mass. – The 66th Air Base Group recently procured a lactation pod to serve civilians, enlisted and officers who work and visit here. Located on the third floor of the Brown Building, building 1305, the lactation pod provides a secure, private room equipped with resources needed for users to safely breastfeed and or pump breast milk. Col. Taona Enriquez, installation commander, said the arrival of the pod to the ABG headquarters building is a crucial step in taking care of Airmen and their families. “A nursing pod may seem like a small feat to some, but for mothers to have a safe space where they can continue parenting in the way that they desire, while continuing to serve, is a huge win for our Air Force,” said Enriquez, a mother of four. Users can find the pod nearest them through the Mamava phone application. The free app shows whether a specific pod is available, and grants access through a one-time key code. While access cannot be reserved ahead of time, the app will notify users when the space is vacant. Once inside, the user has access to electrical outlets and a table, and can choose from several white noise settings through the app. “Unless you’ve gone through these challenges as a mother, you may not realize what a necessity it is to have something like this,” said Jocelyn Foo, 66th Comptroller Squadron budget officer and mother of four. Foo said during her time as a nursing mother, she was constantly searching for secure places to do so, including in cars, bathrooms, and supply closets. “Initiatives like this tell us our leaders here at Hanscom, and across the Air Force, care about us and agree that our families are important,” she said. However, it’s not just Air Force families who will benefit from the pod. Enriquez emphasized that the pod in 1305 is available to all personnel who come to Hanscom. “Our installation hosts veterans, retirees and dependents from across a seven-state region, and this is for all of us,” she said. “From the new mom visiting the Military Personnel Flight with her infant, to the toddler who may need a quiet space after their parents’ appointment at the Comptroller Squadron, this is an opportunity for us to be inclusive and take care of our team in every stage of their lives.” In addition to the Brown Building, there is a second pod located at the 66th Security Forces Squadron, building 1725. Cristi Walls, 66 SFS resource advisor and budget analyst and mother of three, said the squadron building is a secure facility and not open to the public, but squadron dependents and civilian employees can access the pod. Walls assisted in procuring the pod for nursing defenders, and said the project stands out as one of her proudest. “This was one of the best initiatives I have been a part of, and I’m so excited to see another pod arrive on base,” she said. “This sends a great message to women in the military and across the Department of Defense that our priorities are our leader’s priorities.” The pods meet requirements listed by a 2021 Air Force Instruction that require units to establish designated lactation spaces for nursing mothers when there is a need. Individuals at Hanscom interested in establishing a lactation room should coordinate through their facility managers and the 66th Civil Engineering Division by emailing 66.ABG.CE.Requests@us.af.mil. For additional information about procuring a pod, units should coordinate through their respective financial resource advisors.