Do you think breastfeeding in public is appropriate? This young mother has stirred up another debate over breastfeeding in public after being confronted by the manager at a local restaurant.
On Aug. 28, Elizabeth Herzog brought her 5-month-old daughter, Georgia, to Red Robin in Davenport, Iowa. Despite that the establishment has a sign on the door clearly allowing breastfeeding, she was given a warning when she began nursing her daughter—the Red Robin manager tapped her on the shoulder and asked her to “cover up.”
Feeling embarrassed and humiliated, they left the restaurant after informing the manager that state law permits breastfeeding in public.
Born premature at 32 weeks, Georgia, who weighed a mere 3.5 pounds (approx. 1.6 kg), needed much attention from Elizabeth, a first-time mom.
“It doesn’t seem like that big of a task [to cover up] but especially for her, I worry, I worry a lot if I can’t see her face,” said Elizabeth.
There are other establishments that are more lenient, however, such as Ross’ Restaurant in Bettendorf, where the owner knows about Iowa’s law and supports mothers who wish to breastfeed. At Ross’, “they don’t comment and if they do it’s ‘hey good job, you’re doing great, keep it up,’” Elizabeth told WQAD.
Elizabeth still hopes that through sharing her story, more places will be more receptive to breastfeeding. “I’m doing the best I can and I realize to some people it might look a little weird and I realize to some people, they might be shocked by it but all I’m trying to do is nurse my infant,” she said.
When WQAD News team contacted Red Robin, the restaurant’s corporate spokesperson, Kevin Caulfield, said: “We are still looking into the details of what happened and attempting to obtain contact information for the Guest so we can talk with her about her experience.
“While we gather more information, we’ve spoken with the restaurant management to make sure the restaurant team understands public nursing laws in Iowa and the team is prepared to take care of Guests who wish to nurse in our restaurant,” he added.
According to a Facebook post by Elizabeth, Red Robin eventually issued an apology and offered to pay for a meal for her family.
So, what are your thoughts about breastfeeding in public; should all restaurants be required to follow state laws?