Good old Jane Martinson in The Guardian, she does seem to "get it"!
This appeared in the Telegraph today!
One of the most irritating things about being in a maternity unit is being accosted by Bounty (sic) "ladies" (salespersons) and being given numerous plastic bags full of advertising and samples of various toxic substances. Even hand-held maternity notes come in plastic "Bounty" envelopes. In fact, if you are left in any doubt as to the value of your pregnancy to global commerce at the beginning of pregnancy, even the most ardent advocate of free enterprise must be pig-sick of the rubbish being thrown at them by the time they qualify for the final samples which are usually waiting for them by their postnatal bed or in the baby's cot!! Of course, it doesn't end there. Once you are on the Bounty mailing list, a small forest of snail-mailings will be sent and your inbox will be full of junk from Bounty every time you manage to find a few minutes to sit at your computer in the first year of motherhood. And this barrage of crap is justified on the grounds of "information-giving". As far as maternity units are concerned, the dosh they get for allowing this rampant commercialisation of birth is all that interests them. They even have to constantly check that the stuff in the packs doesn't run counter to evidence-based maternity care, especially as regards breastfeeding, and have said reps in to remonstrate with them when it doesn't.
Why does the NHS allow such access to its clients? It doesn't allow it for other groups, just pregnant women. It justifies it, or allows Bounty to justify it, on the grounds that the Bounty Packs contain the child benefit claim form and this charade is therefore providing a public service. Utter tosh. You do not need to fill your recycling bin with rubbish just to get your child benefit form. Here it is:
Instructions for completion are here:
and the link to the petition trying to get this sorry state of affairs changed is here!!
As I write, over 14,500 people have already signed!