On January 1, Jordan Williams made a Facebook post that has since gone viral. The post gives details of a phone conversation that took place between Williams and a supervisor at ACAC Midlothian's KidZone in Virginia.
Williams says she was breastfeeding her "sobbing" toddler and "screaming" baby in the drop off/pick up zone of the establishment. An hour later, she received a call from the supervisor. Williams writes, "I received a call from the supervisor of KidZone informing me that all mothers are to use a cover or go into a hidden room to nurse. When I informed her that she could not legally require me to cover up or leave, expressed my concerns about how upset my children were when I arrived, explained how devastating such a call might be to a less experienced breastfeeding mother, and asked to speak to her supervisor I was given the run around." It took several calls before Williams was able to speak to the general manager of ACAC Midlothian. Expecting an apology, she says she was further shamed for breastfeeding in public.
"This is not okay. For any new mother or any mother struggling with postpartum anxiety as I am, getting out of the house is a major accomplishment by itself. Obstacles to breastfeeding can be devastating. Expecting a hungry, crying child to nurse under a cover or wait until a hidden location can be found is not only unreasonable but borderline offensive. The staff at ACAC have made it clear that my baby's need to eat is less important than their perception of breasts as sexual objects," Williams said in her post.
Virginia law allows women to breastfeed in any place they are legally allowed to be.
Williams' husband, Edwin Wallace, has pointed out that no one spoke to her while
she was breastfeeding and explains that for them, covering up isn't an option as their children will not eat when covered. He said he is in contact with the attorney who helped enact the legislation that made public breastfeeding legal in all locations.
[bctt tweet="Gym Issues Apology After Shaming Breastfeeding Mother"]
ACAC Midlothian responded by posting the following statement on their Facebook page:
“We are sincerely sorry to have upset a mom in our club recently. We pride ourselves on being a club that caters to families, and the last thing we would want to do is upset any family. We support the rights of all mothers to breastfeed their children. There are no policies that prohibit or restrict breastfeeding in our clubs.
"In regards to this particular event, at no point was the mother interrupted or asked to refrain from breastfeeding her children. After receiving feedback from members, a team member did call the mom later that day to offer additional options for breastfeeding in the club. In a subsequent conversation, our general manager emphasized that the mother was free to continue breastfeeding in the same spot or anywhere she chose in the club. We tried to have this conversation with great respect and sensitivity. We apologize that we have offended her and many others. We never wanted this mom to feel unwelcome or uncomfortable.”
What do you think of this story? Should breastfeeding mothers cover up, seek privacy or be left to feed their children in peace? Share your thoughts with us!
Source: Opposing Views
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