Lawyer Elizabeth Beck was questioning Trump during a lawsuit trial when she requested a medical break so she could pump milk for her 3-month-old baby. However, her request was denied by Trump and his lawyers, and the presidential hopeful reportedly told her, “You’re disgusting,” before exiting the room.
This distressing bit of testimony hasn’t been denied by Trump’s side at all. His defense? According to Trump’s lawyer, Beck actually pulled out her breast pump to demonstrate her need, and that’s what led to Trump’s dreadful tantrum. However, she didn’t actually pump milk in front of everybody, but the idea was so awful to him that he couldn’t bear even seeing the pump itself.
Even though Trump and his lawyer suspected that Beck was using breast pump time as an excuse to think of new questions (it’s claimed that they provided “appropriate” breaks for her), there is no way telling a mother that she’s disgusting because she pumps milk for her infant is acceptable.
If you’re a breastfeeding, working mom or you’re away from your baby for several hours, you usually have to pump. Pumping is a necessity for many women, because not only are you providing food for your child, but not doing so can lead to discomfort, pain, leaking and even infection. Plugged ducts and mastitis are two potential (and particularly uncomfortable) side effects of missing a pumping session or feeding, and while the best course of action if you experience either is to continue nursing, you likely will need medical intervention in some cases, particularly if you have an infection.
Providing break time for pumping milk is now a federal law. The Fair Labor Standards Act now reads that employers are required to provide break time for a year after a child’s birth each time the employee has a need to pump. Pumping moms are also allowed access to a private area — that is not a bathroom — to pump, and that area should be out of sight and free from the risk of intrusion.
Allowing a mom to empty her breasts isn’t just a courtesy — it’s a right, and Trump being offensive about it, while it’s in line with his abrasive persona, is still pretty crummy.