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One of the Last Holdouts, Michigan Finally Protects Breastfeeding Moms

"You wouldn't eat your lunch in a bathroom,” the executive director of the Michigan Breastfeeding Network said. “Why should our most precious and sweetest citizens have to eat in a bathroom?"

Gov. Rick Snyder signed the Breastfeeding Anti-Discrimination Act Tuesday. It protects nursing mothers from being tossed out of businesses and other public places as they feed their babies. (Patch file photo)
Gov. Rick Snyder signed the Breastfeeding Anti-Discrimination Act Tuesday. It protects nursing mothers from being tossed out of businesses and other public places as they feed their babies. (Patch file photo)

Michigan’s nursing mothers no longer have to retreat to a public restroom or worry about being thrown out of businesses after Gov. Rick Snyder signed the Breastfeeding Anti-Discrimination Act Tuesday.

Members of the Michigan Breastfeeding Network pushed hard for the legislation, which faced an uphill climb in the House after gaining approval from the Senate last year. It ultimately passed with little opposition, making Michigan one of the last states in the country to protect breastfeeding mothers, WDIV, Channel 4, reports.

Forty-five states have laws protecting breastfeeding mothers, according to the National Conference on State Legislatures, and 29 of them exempt breastfeeding in public indecency laws, MLive reports.

Breastfeeding advocates hailed the governor’s signature as an important protection for mothers and said that breastfeeding gets babies off to a healthy start.

"There's nothing more natural than giving birth and there's nothing more natural than feeding your child using your body," Michigan Breastfeeding executive director Shannon Polk said at a news conference after the governor signed the bill, MLive reports.

"You wouldn't eat your lunch in a bathroom,” she said. “Why should our most precious and sweetest citizens have to eat in a bathroom?"

The new law will put a stop to calls like one a Harper Woods woman made in 2009 after she saw a woman breastfeeding in the aisle in a Target store. In another incident in 2011, a SMART bus reportedly told an Eastpointe woman to cover up or get off the bus.


Emily Wallent June 25, 2014 at 09:13 PM
OR, you just made the best trolling post I've ever seen. I can't decide.
micheal w smith June 26, 2014 at 06:23 AM
OK, time for a male to weigh in. What is wrong with breast feeding in public - NOT A DAMN THING. I don't find it salicious. I don't find it offensive. I don't find it sexy. No more then if the woman had a baby bottle instead of her breast. Context is everything. I am as "red blooded" as any guy, but nursing a baby is NOT a turn on. If anything, it invokes my paternal instincts. Relax ladies. Babies come first!!
Berkley Mom June 26, 2014 at 07:10 AM
Joyla - you are exactly what is wrong with our society.
Diane Cliff June 26, 2014 at 01:26 PM
Most women who breast feed do not let it "all hang out." There are blankets and other coverups to allow modesty. Ms. Chimes, if you think feeding your child in a public restroom is ok, why don't you take your food in there and enjoy your meal? I would suggest if you see someone nursing their baby you just turn your eyes away and keep on walking.
cookiepro2 June 26, 2014 at 07:09 PM
Thank you Gov. Snyder and legislators, appears that breastfeeding mothers needed this protection from busybodies and know-it-alls. Between a howling infant and a mom nursing said infant, if I were on a bus, I know which I'd pick. Also agree with Diane Cliff, there are discrete ways to breastfeed, even more covered up than in this article's photo.

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