You won't believe the reason this breastfeeding mother in Omaha, Nebraska says police threatened to (illegally) ticket her. We still need to #normalizebreastfeeding.
One mom is planning to file a complaint with the Omaha, Neb. police department after an officer threatened to (illegally) ticket her for breastfeeding her infant son during a school board meeting.
Rosalyn Mizzell told KMTV that a policewoman came up to her and threatened to cite her as she fed four-month-old Calvin in a meeting about sex education in the curriculum. "The first thing she said to me is 'Don't do that in front of me. Have more respect for yourself and everybody else here,'" said Mizzell, adding that the confrontation happened because a man said her breastfeeding was offensive.
Fortunately for Mizzell, Nebraska law says that "a mother may breastfeed her child in any public or private location where the mother is otherwise authorized to be," so she wasn't ticketed for the incident. The officer did apologize, but "her apology went along the lines of, 'I was offended, other people were offended, if you wanted to breastfeed you could have done it in the bathroom or stayed home'," according to Mizzell.
The whole situation is another reminder that even though mothers have made strides to #normalizebreastfeeding, there's still a painfully long way to go.
In this case, the Omaha Police Department issued a statement saying that officers were required to follow-up after the complaint: "As for claims or allegations of inappropriate behavior by officers, we recommend Ms. Mizzell file a formal complaint with the department so we can investigate her claims."
Mizzell told the news station that she plans to do just that—and she will continue to breastfeed in public.
"Police are the ones who are supposed to know what the laws are, and they're supposed to uphold the law," she said. "It's their job to protect my legal right to breastfeed, not to shame me for doing that."