A woman in DC was accused of indecent exposure after she was “caught” breastfeeding her baby in public. Simone dos Santos was feeding her baby in a government building when an officer asked her to stop, claiming that what she was doing with her baby was “indecent.”
“I was shocked, upset and angry that by providing food for my son I was being treated like a criminal,” Ms dos Santos said. The police might have been messing with the wrong woman, since Ms. dos Santos is an attorney. She said she had her four-month old covered with a jacket during the time she was in the building and the guards had no right to stop her from feeding her child.
“As an attorney, I knew that I had rights. I called my law firm to ask for pro bono assistance and an associate who could immediately research the whether there was a law regarding breastfeeding in public,” she wrote. ”I’ve since learned that the guards were completely wrong,’ she continues, ‘and had no right to stop me from nursing my infant son.”
The guards probably should have known that DC and 28 others states exempt breastfeeding from state indecency laws. Breastfeeding is linked to health benefits for both the mother and child, including lower risks for Type 2 diabetes, breast cancer and many other ailments.
“It is appalling and heartbreaking that these officers, who are of childbearing age, are so ill-informed about the benefits of breastfeeding when our local infant outcomes are so very dismal,” Ms dos Santos wrote, referring to African Americans.
Source: What the HA-YELL!