Breastfeeding in public may be legal in the United States, but that doesn’t mean it’s always a friendly world out there for a mom who wants to nurse her baby. Which is why a message from Target to its employees on what to do if they encounter a breastfeeding mother has got a lot of moms putting down the baby and pumping their fists in the air.
Originally shared on the Facebook page of Breastfeeding Mama Talk, a site for moms to talk lactation and more, the three-point plan for Target employees is pretty simple: If mama wants to nurse, let her nurse!
The post had already garnered nearly half a million likes within 24 hours of being shared and for good reason. Nursing in public is protected by law in 49 states plus the District of Columbia and the Virgin Islands. And yet many businesses find themselves in the middle of a public relations nightmare because they don’t educate their employees — as Target has — on what to do when a mom is feeding her baby. All of a sudden their Yelp page is being bombarded with angry moms (and dads) or moms are staging a nurse-in on their doorsteps. Worse, many a mom finds herself being discriminated against because those employees are clueless.
Is it any wonder nearly half of U.S. moms confess to being uncomfortable breastfeeding in public (to put that in context: Just 11 percent of moms in Turkey say the same)?
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That’s why policies like these are important but also why it’s good for every woman to know that the law is on a mom’s side. If you’ve got a little one who you plan to feed somewhere outside the home, brush up before you grab your diaper bag and head out. Not only do you have the right to nurse in public, but some states also provide moms with recourse if they’re harassed for doing it. So if an employee isn’t as well-prepped as the khaki and red polo-shirted crews seem to be, you can tell them exactly what’s in store for them!