November 23, 2003

Newsflash: Breastfeeding is legal... While I am astounded at the headliner and PR push of this headline Burger King To Allow Breast-Feeding, it should not be news - but sadly it is.

The article which boldly states:
"From now on, mothers who wish to breast-feed their babies are welcome to do so in Burger King restaurants."

Makes it seem like Burger King is doing this noble and grand thing by merely upholding the law! For those unfamiliar with this case, a woman was told to move to the bathroom in Burger King to nurse her child because a patron complained. There was a nurse in planned in response and the day before it was scheduled Burger King was forthcoming with it's generous policy reversal:

" Under the new policy, employees are told if a customer complains about a mother who's breast-feeding, they are to explain that breast-feeding is permitted in the restaurant and suggest that the complaining customer move."

While I am VERY excited that this is getting national media coverage and that Burger King made a reversal of its policy - I am in shock that it is being reported in a favorable light for BK. Where is the outrage at the fact that they were ILLEGAL in what they did?

Perhaps Burger King management and lawyers had merely overlooked the law of their state (in this case Utah) which according to:

Utah House Bill # 262, 1995
1995 Ut. HB 262
Utah Code Ann. § 10-8-41, § 10-8-50, § 17-15-25, § 76-9-702, § 76-10-1229.5,:

" 76-10-1229.5. Breast Feeding is not Violation of this Part.
A woman's breast feeding, including breast feeding in any location where the woman otherwise may rightfully be, does not under any circumstance constitute a violation of this part, irrespective of whether or not the breast is covered during or incidental to feeding."

"Boards of Commissioners and City Councils of Cities may not prohibit a woman's breast feeding in any location where she otherwise may rightfully be, irrespective of whether the breast is uncovered during or incidental to the breastfeeding."

Perhaps Burger King lawyers never read this part of the law or never informed their clients of it until the nurse-in was staged - but really to give KUDOS to Burger King is a JOKE! How about merely stating that Burger King admits it must follow the law and any mother is allowed to nurse and if a customer has a problem with it they should move to the bathroom for the remainder of their meal (I'm not serious - though perhaps for once it would drive home the outrage of asking a mother to nurse on the toilet!!!!

_Sigh_ Deep Breath... Stepping off the Soapbox and saying I AM GLAD that Burger King is going to follow the law now.


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