Breastfeeding is a normal and natural thing, yet some women are still being shamed for it. Young mother, Myranda Juarez was publicly embarrassed for nursing her baby in the gymnasium of her older children's elementary school in Louisville, Kentucky, according to KWTX.
Juarez told the outlet she was helping out at the school for picture day when the incident occurred. Her youngest daughter, Natalie, got restless during the day's events, so she decided to try and calm her by breastfeeding. Juarez told KWTX she waited until students started leaving the building to start nursing, in an effort to avoid any issues.
Shortly after she started nursing, Juarez said she was approached by a school counselor who offered to let her use her office to feed Natalie in a private setting. Juarez was frustrated by the offer, she told the news station, as she felt it was coming from a place of judgement.
"I just simply don't have to be moved," she told KWTX. "I didn't prefer to be moved. I didn't feel like I was making a disruption. I didn't have anybody coming up to me and saying anything further and the volunteers and teachers I spoke with said they didn't know I was doing anything more than holding her and on a phone call."
Juarez told the counselor she was fine where she was, which sparked a bigger issue. The counselor told her she had to move or leave the school, adding that children were uncomfortable. She did not provide Juarez with any further explanation, which caught her off guard.
"I would never want to put anyone in that kind of position, it was never my intent," she said. "My intent was just to calm my child and put her to sleep."
Days after the incident occurred, she met with the school principal. She was told that the counselor was following instructions when she asked Juarez to move. The principal alleged that breastfeeding on school grounds is only permitted in private offices, WAVE reported.
She's now suing the school, according to Yahoo!. In her lawsuit, filed by attorney Ted Gordon, Juarez is seeking damages from the school and asking that staff at Jefferson County Public Schools undergo sensitivity training. According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, Kentucky law "permits a mother to breastfeed her baby of express breast milk in any public or private location."
Photo credit: WKTX