RICHMOND, Va. — Mothers raising babies in Virginia live in just one of three states without a law that protects them while breast-feeding in public.
Under current Virginia law, mothers are protected to breast-feed while on state property, but nowhere else. That leaves some mothers feeling like they could legally be asked to leave a restaurant, theater or other business for refusing to cover-up while breast-feeding.
A new bill before the 2015 Virginia General Assembly would expand that area of protection for breast-feeding mothers to “any place where the mother is lawfully present.”
“We need a law like this to protect women because even though I feel fine breast-feeding knowing that I’m not protected and I may be asked to leave, not every woman is going to make that choice,” breast-feeding mother Hilary Scribner said. “In general, a law like this would be a great start to changing cultural norms, but really we have more to do.”