School worker tells breastfeeding mom to move to bathroom

by: Ken Lemon Updated:

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GASTON COUNTY, N.C. - A woman said she was nursing her 7-month-old at a school administration office when a county employee told her she needed to move to the bathroom.
 
The Gaston County school district is apologizing but said she could have picked a better place to breastfeed.
 
Jennifer Harvey could not believe the reaction she got from Gaston County school officials while nursing her baby Monday morning at the administration office.
 
She was there to help register a relative for school and there were other parents and children in a large meeting room.
 
Her Lynn Leigh became hungry.
 
"I excused myself too It's kind of a public place but it was out away from the crowd," Harvey said.
 
She sat down in the lobby and grabbed a blanket.
 
“You couldn't see any skin. You couldn't see her. She was completely covered," Harvey said.
 
She said there was one man in the lobby next to her as she nursed her baby and he didn't seemed to be bothered by her actions.
 
But Harvey said a schools employee approached her.
 
“She’s kind of scrunched her nose up and said, ‘Not here. We have a bathroom and we have a bench,’" Harvey said.
 
A schools spokesman said there are cameras in the lobby and halls of the building for public safety.
 
He said it's is probably not the best place to nurse a child.
 
Harvey said Lynn Leigh didn't want to nurse in the bathroom and she felt the school's response sends the wrong message.
"It's so good for the baby and it's healthy for the baby but when breastfeeding mothers do it, we are asked to go to a nasty bathroom," Harvey said.
 
Some parents agreed with her.
 
"As long as they take a blanket and cover up their breast, I have no problem with it,” James McClain said.  “Child's got to be fed."
 
Others said you shouldn't nurse a child in a place where other young children might see.
"A child might not understand that," Catherine McNeil.
 
Harvey said what she did is natural and she worries other parents may face the same problems.
 
She wants the school system to change their policies.