A mom has been left ‘ashamed’ and ’embarrassed’ after being asked to leave a public pool in Texas City for trying to breastfeed her ten-month-old son.
Misty Daugereaux claims lifeguards and the manger of Nessler Family Aquatic Center told her to ‘cover-up or leave’ because she was ‘breaking the rules.’
After the mom-of-two refused to leave on Sunday Texas City Police Department were called in – who later convinced vacate the public pool.
They have since released body cam footage of their encounter with Daugereaux, where she can be seen welling-up while talking to the officer.
They pool manager tells the cop that ‘outraged’ Daugereaux had ‘cussed out’ a male lifeguard.
Approaching the mother, who is cradling her son Maxx to her chest, she told the officer, ‘I started crying I was so emotional’ and ‘I don’t stand for a lot, but I will stand for that.’
Daugereaux told the officer she had asked to see the park rules to find out how she had broken their rules, but was refused.
She said: ‘I’m conscious enough to know I don’t want every man in the pool looking at my boobs.
‘But when you have a ten-month-old who doesn’t take a bottle, I’m going to feed him and I’m not being disrespectful.
‘I don’t want to cause a scene but I’m going to feed my baby.’
Later when speaking to the lifeguard and manager, they claim she had both breasts out and they wanted her to leave for her alleged behavior to staff.
They also claimed that they had had as many as seven complaints about her breastfeeding.
While being asked to leave by the officer, Daugereaux adds: ‘I don’t understand how this is right… It’s embarrassing that I can’t feed my baby.’
Towards the end of the footage, which has received 76,000 views so far, the officer can be heard insisting to staff that she should have covered-up under a blanket.
Before adding: ‘…don’t sit there with both your t*** out.’
Since the incident, the mother has taken to social media and with the support of a Galveston breastfeeding support group of mothers held a ‘nurse-in’ at the pool on Monday.
The group hoped to raise awareness of the issue faced by many mothers, sporting the hashtag #normalizebreastfeeding.
One sign read: ‘Out of Milk since ’99 But like a Good Bra Still Supportive!’
In an emotional post on Facebook, Daugereaux, wrote: ‘STAND FOR NOTHING AND YOU’LL FALL FOR ANYTHING!
‘I’m so hurt, embarrassed and ASHAMED, that this is what TEXAS CITY STANDS FOR.’
She recalled her four-year-old son’s reaction to the event, she said: ‘Tears pouring down my face. My son asked, Momma why won’t they let you feed MAXX?
‘I was alone not wanting to cause a scene my kids, to the momma that stood up for me THANK YOU!’
Since the of outpouring of messages online coming to the mother’s aid, she expressed her gratitude.
‘I feel powerful, loved and supported more than I could have ever imagined,’ she told ABCNews during the ‘nurse-in’.
According to Texas law, a mother is entitled to breastfeed her baby anywhere that she is allowed to be present, citing it as an ‘important and basic act of nature that must be encouraged’.
In a statement released by the City of Texas City, they would be reviewing the ‘nursing concerns’ and how it was addressed by staff.
They wrote: ‘We apologize to Misty Daugereaux as it is clear she was offended by how she was treated at our City Facility.
‘City policies and procedures will be reviewed and revised as deemed necessary.
‘Any deficiencies regarding our employee’s actions will be addressed with further training.’
The post by Daugereaux explaining the incident online, has received over 1,800 shares and 3,400 comments so far.
One user, Jasmine Skyy, wrote: ‘Shame on them! I’m sorry that you had to experience that. Wish I was there to help defend you.’
Another Helen Sanchez Willner commented: ‘They should be ashamed of themselves because a mother should be able to nurse their baby anywhere. This is why God gave women the ability to do this.’
Chuck Perry wrote: ‘Breastfeeding is actually one of the most natural things there is. Before there were bottles, there were “sugar t***” for mothers who could not make milk, but that was the ONLY exception before we became so sensitive.’