Argument: Breastfeeding in public is legal almost everywhere

Issue Report: Breastfeeding in public


Lindsey Nelson. “Breastfeeding in Public is Not a Crime.” FirstRight Advisory Council Member on Opposing “Breastfeeding in public is not illegal. There are no state or federal laws that prohibit breastfeeding in public. In fact, as of June 2007 forty-four states have formally recognized the need to protect and support breastfeeding mothers and children by passing legislation that specifically protect a mother’s right to breastfeed in public. Eight states have even added enforcement provisions to these laws that penalize those who interfere with a mother breastfeeding her child in public[1]. The federal government also protects a mother’s right to breastfeed her child on any federal property: Public Law 106-058, sec. 647 (1999) “Notwithstanding any other provision of law, a woman may breastfeed her child at any location in a Federal building or on Federal property, if the woman and her child are otherwise authorized to be present at the location.” Our state and federal lawmakers recognize that there is nothing inappropriate about breastfeeding a child in public, it is time for our American society at large to adopt the same attitude. Anyone who does not agree is free to exercise their right to simply look away if they are offended by mothers and children breastfeeding in public.”

Nancy Solomon. “Breastfeeding in Public Is a Basic Civil Right.” WEnews. August 7, 2002: “What many people do not know is that breastfeeding in public is legal in every state. A mother does not need to “cover up” or go somewhere more private. More than half of states have laws specifically protecting this right, but even in those that do not, it is still legal to breastfeed in public.”

Nicki Heskin, Breastfeeding & Early Childhood Writer. “Breasts are For Feeding Babies!” On Opposing Views: “Regardless of what an individual may think about public breastfeeding, it’s protected by law. According to the CDC Breastfeeding Report Card (August 2008) 47 states protect women’s right to breastfeed their babies in public (and the other three…shame on you!). So keep your opinions to yourself, avert your eyes and keep on walking.”