There is a new hashtag trending on Twitter. You might have seen it — #feedwill. Will's mama, Casey Yu, was on a flight home from a funeral when she was asked by two flight attendants to cover up while she nursed him. Yu, who is fully aware of her right to breastfeed her child as needed (and without being required to cover up), refused to do so. She took her message to Twitter, launched the hashtag and watched the support flow in.
Delta Airlines is unfortunately not new to breastfeeding controversy, as just a few months ago I wrote about a Delta customer service agent who set off a massive uproar on social media because she told a new mom that she wouldn't be able to breastfeed her kiddo without a cover. And the problems go back even further, when a mom was actually kicked off a Delta flight for nursing her little one in 2006 (Delta eventually settled for an undisclosed amount after the resulting lawsuit).
So you would think — you would really, really think — that the airline would have training protocol in place for not only customer service agents but also those who work with the public on the planes themselves. Moms can breastfeed their babies. They are not required to cover up. End of story. Right?
Yu, unfortunately, found out that these two individuals did not read the training manual thoroughly. First, a flight attendant told her that she needed to cover up due to complaints from other passengers, and when she refused, a second flight attendant came over to insist on the same. Yu yet again refused, and began tweeting her experience immediately.
And to really illustrate the lack of respect and care these employees have, they proceeded to lie when Yu was letting the captain know what had happened — in fact, she was told by the second flight attendant that she had brought this on herself by exposing too much of herself while nursing her baby.
I have never been so disrespected before in my life. Male FA said I was showing people (WHO??) my entire front side. #feedwill— Casey Yu (@caseyyu) May 21, 2014
Yu shared a photo of what she looks like nursing her baby, and as with most nursing moms, it looks like she's simply snuggling her baby. Her story is an unfortunately familiar one for moms who have had similar experiences. Delta has to get this right, and they have to get it right immediately. Support is rolling in as moms rally around one of their own.
Hassling a nursing mom is rude, intimidating, stressful and, in some states (like Missouri, where I live), it's actually illegal. People who work for and with the public have to be fully trained as soon as they are hired on a company's breastfeeding policy, which should be something like, "Leave nursing mothers alone."
C'mon Delta, get with it.
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