DENTON (CBSDFW.COM) – University of North Texas Students have launched a controversial ad campaign to support a mother’s right to breastfeed in public.
The project is titled “When Nuture Calls” and aims to bring awareness to the “lactose loophole” that some say exists in Texas.
While state law allows mothers to breastfeed in public, it also gives private business owners the right to refuse service to anyone. The two laws are at odds for mothers who want to breastfeed in public and have complained that some businesses will kick them out when they try to feed their children.
There is proposed legislation, House Bill 1706, which would close the loophole and provide protection for women who want to breastfeed in public. UNT students Kris Haro and Johnathan Wenske have thrown their support behind the bill with a class art project, which has gotten a lot of attention.
Haro and Wenske designed three posters showing women sitting on a toilet in a bathroom stall as they breastfeed a baby. The posters include taglines like, “Table for 2,” and “Bon Appetit.”
The students say they chose to highlight this cause because their research showed that women continue to be harassed or even kicked out of restaurants or other places if the owners do not support public breastfeeding.
“Mothers should have the choice,” said Wenske. “We’ve found that mothers choose to breastfeed for different reasons. Some can’t afford formula.”
“The times are also changing,” Haro chimed in. “More women are working and have busier lives. Breastfeeding is more convenient for some. If they won’t be staying at home, they should feel comfortable feeding their child even if they are out in public.”
The students have received both support and criticism about the posters. While they were just a class project, they have ignited the public breast feeding debate once again.
“There are people who say you shouldn’t expose your children to people breastfeeding in public. So then we would say… why are you teaching your child that this is a sexualized thing? That’s one of the conversations what we’ve been able to start with this campaign. Parents should be educating their children that this is a natural thing,” said Wenske.
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