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Tuesday, June 06, 2006I'm always a little dissapointed when lactivists jump on a store, rather than an employee for a breastfeeding in public incident. Thus, I think it's important that when it's not store policy and the store immediately stands up and says that the employee was wrong, that we should support the company and celebrate the choice of a major corporation to show the normalcy of nursing in public.
Here's the story...
Apparently a mom was told by a Target employee in Minneapolis that she could not nurse her child in a fitting room. According to CBS Chicago, the incident went someting like this:
While Dover was nursing in her usual place, the fitting room attendant knocked on the door and asked if she was OK. Dover replied that she was fine and was feeding her baby. "She said, 'You know, you're not allowed to do that in there,'" Dover said.
When she had finished nursing Kendall, she confronted the worker. The employee told her "it's unsanitary; it's a liability; it's store policy -- all the excuses in the book," Dover said. She then asked the employee where she should nurse instead.
"And she said I should go into the bathroom," Dover said. "There's no chairs in there, no place to set up other than on toilet. I'm not going to sit in the bathroom and breast-feed my baby. Then, she said, 'Well, you should feed her before you come.' Which I did, but we'd been out for a few hours, and she needed to eat again. It was insulting."
At the checkout, Dover asked for a manager, who backed up the fitting-room attendant.
However, when she called Target's national hotline, she was told that the employee and store manager were the ones in the wrong and that corporate policy was that nursing mothers were welcome in Target stores. As such, Target has responded with a public apology and the following statement:
"Target has a long-standing practice that supports breastfeeding in our stores. We apologize for any inconvenience the guest experienced and will take this opportunity to reaffirm this commitment with our team members," company representative Kristi Arndt said.
"For guests in our stores, we support the use of fitting rooms for women who wish to breastfeed their babies, even if others are waiting to use the fitting rooms. In addition, guests who choose to breastfeed discreetly in more public areas of the store are welcome to do so without being made to feel uncomfortable.
Good for Target!