There are probably few things as scary to a new mother as the thought of her child going hungry.
"It’s beyond desperation," said Yana Schmuliver, of Ladera Height’s Karing Advocates United for Social Equality, a nonprofit helping families from underserved communities.
Schmuliver said in her many years doing this, she has never seen anything like this.
"I am having to reach out to Canada to try to find baby formula, because there is none in this country," Schmuliver said.
Before you think this is only affecting low income women, think again. We spoke to mothers at Santa Monica’s Pump Station and Nurtury, well known for its programs to help moms maximize milk production.
"It was terrifying" says Elda Lazaro, holding her first baby.
She explains she had turned to formula as she couldn’t produce enough milk, but quickly ran into the formula shortage.
"I would have probably started looking at the black market, if it hadn’t been for this place" she adds.
The Pump Station’s Cheryl Petran confirms that moms are everywhere are worried.
"We can help them, we have been doing this for many years," she explains.
Even mothers who stopped breastfeeding for a while may be candidates for certain techniques for relactation, which may moms are looking into.
But that’s not an option for everyone. As some are looking into neighborhood groups, where moms who produce enough milk share with others, there is a serious concern. Especially when we are hearing that the market may not get back to "normal" for weeks.
If you go to the Pumpstation.com you will find free videos and resources, along with their ongoing services, which they are adding more lactation programs to.
Kause-la.org is still providing care kits for low income moms who qualify.
She may not have baby formula right now, but is working on it, and can help guide women through the options out there.
Shmuliver putting out a call to politicians and community leaders saying, "This is a crisis, in some ways, worse than COVID."
"Where are all those politicians wanting our votes? Where are the answers and the urgency about mothers who are truly asking themselves, how will I feed my baby – now?" Schmuliver adds.