A mum who claims to have been kicked out of a church for breastfeeding is staging a ‘nurse-in’ in protest.
Amanda Ziliken was nursing her 4-month-old daughter at the back of Elevation Church when a volunteer asked her to relocate to the loo.
The church is in North Carolina, where women are permitted by law to breastfeed in public – covered or uncovered.
‘It embarrassed me and drew people’s attention,’ Amanda told the Charlotte Observer.
‘To take me to the mother’s restroom was totally unacceptable, humiliating – and illegal.’
Even Pope France has said that women should be able to nurse in church.
‘That’s the way it is. You mothers, go ahead and breastfeed, without fear. Just like the Virgin Mary nursed Jesus,’ he said during a speech back in January.
Apparently, she tried to carry on breastfeeding, explaining to the volunteer that it was her right but found little sympathy.
Amanda then posted about the incident on Facebook, including a picture of the bathroom where she was forced to feed her baby.
Within a week, it’d been shared over 1,700 times – winning the attention of Ariel Tauro, a breastfeeding activist who was helping Amanda to organise a ‘nurse-in’ during today’s 11am service.
‘When she questioned the volunteer, she was told it is not about her own comfort, but the comfort of others,’ says Kelsey Henderson, who is now trying to raise money for Amanda to hire a lawyer.
‘I am asking for donations to hire a lawyer for Amanda. The church staff was wrong in the way they handled this situation.
‘One of the men that were laughing presumably at Amanda’s experience sent her a condescending massage, saying that her children will embarrass her more than this situation has, adding insult to injury.
‘I want to make certain this does not happen to another woman at Elevation services. Not only should they have trained their staff better, there is no excuse for leading a breastfeeding mother to a bathroom. The goal of the lawsuit is to STOP the embarrassment and discrimination of breastfeeding mothers!
‘Also to provide an accessible, and adequate room for mothers to breastfeed in if they should CHOOSE to use it. It’s a shame that breasts are so sexualized that a mother cannot peacefully feed her child just as Christians believe Mary fed Jesus, in a church of all places.’