The idea of breastfeeding outside the home still makes people uncomfortable but should a mother be prevented from feeding her baby in public? A museum went too far when one of its visitors happened to be a breastfeeding mother.
The National Palace Museum in Taipei, Taiwan was penalised for stopping a woman from breastfeeding on its premises.
This seems to be the first case of its kind since a national law was passed to protect the rights of women to breastfeed their babies in public, stated the authorities.
It was reported that the director and an employee of the museum, were each fined NT$6,000 (S$257) for violating the public breastfeeding law passed back in 2010, as covered by the China Post.
The incident came to public attention after the woman lodged a complaint that a museum worker asked her to leave the museum when she tried to breastfeed her infant son outside one of the museum’s exhibition room. According to Taipei’s Department of Health, the staff member told the mother that it was inappropriate to breast-feed in public.
Representatives of the museum stated it would appeal against the fine and that the worker was just telling the woman that the museum had a breastfeeding room for mothers.
Taiwan had laid down the Act Governing Breastfeeding in Public Places (公共場所母乳哺育條例), which makes it illegal for anyone to prevent women from breastfeeding in public.
Taiwan’s government has been promoting breastfeeding among new mothers. It has promised to ensure a better environment for mothers to nurse their babies after similar incidents occurred.
Breastfeeding in Singapore is legal and more public places are becoming friendlier to the needs of breastfeeding mothers.
Breastfeeding in public should be widely accepted because babies can get hungry at any time and it’s hard to be a parent without leaving the home. As soon as mother has resumed her normal routine, it can be very hard to find a private place to breastfeed her baby, if not impossible. Breastfeeding in public is increasingly seen as an acceptable act, where news of breastfeeding being denied is met with public outrage.
Aside from practicalities, many women make a personal choice about breastfeeding in public because they feel it is the best way to meet their babies’ needs. There are amenities for mothers with infants in shopping malls allowing for breastfeeding in public to be conducted.
Should you require assistance in regards to Breastfeeding be it doing it in the public or otherwise,
theAsianparent also has a Singapore Breastfeeding Mums Support Group that you can join for mum-to-mum advice.