DENVER — Colorado Gov. Jared Polis (D) has signed an Executive Order declaring a disaster emergency due to the nationwide infant formula shortage.
The declaration will make emergency funds immediately available to support the free distribution of donor human milk across Colorado, said Polis' office on Thursday.
"While the federal government is working to address the nationwide infant formula shortage, the State must also act to protect the health and safety of children in Colorado," states Polis' Executive Order.
The Governor's office is asking the public for donations of human milk and financial donations that would help families who are lacking baby formula. Information on how to donate, purchase milk or make a donation can be found at milkbankcolorado.org.
Polis also encourages anyone who has unused and unopened formula to donate it to a local food bank.
Infant formula producer Abbott anticipates another six- to eight-week delay until additional formula is available on retail shelves.
"The nationwide infant formula shortage is a disaster that threatens the lives of children throughout our state," said the Governor’s Executive Order. "It is incomprehensible that babies’ health is threatened by the formula shortage, and the State must ensure that donor human milk, which can be used in place of formula in many instances, is as accessible as possible for all families in need."
"Additionally, no one should take advantage of parents or caregivers who are trying to feed infants during this formula shortage. During a declared disaster, price gouging for consumer goods is unlawful and the Attorney General and District Attorneys have the power to enforce against illegal price gouging."
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