Woman alleges she was kicked off flight for bfing - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 172 Old 11-14-2006, 01:08 PM - Thread Starter
 
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http://www.burlingtonfreepress.com/a...plate=printart
or
http://tinyurl.com/ygtogq

Burlington Free Press
Woman alleges she was kicked off Burlington flight for breast-feeding

By Sky Barsch
Free Press Staff Writer

November 14, 2006
A New Mexico woman who was kicked off an airplane departing from
Burlington International Airport after she breast-fed her 22-month-old
daughter has filed a complaint against two airlines with the Vermont
Human Rights Commission.

Emily Gillette, 27, filed a charge with the commission last week -- a
step citizens can take before suing in court -- after a Freedom
Airlines flight attendant allegedly told Gillette that she offended
her, ordering her to cover up.

(see link for full article)

Janice

(this link has a photo of the mom & babe
http://burlingtonfreepress.com/apps/.../NEWS/61114002
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#2 of 172 Old 11-14-2006, 01:14 PM
 
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Wow, that makes my blood boil that the airline backed that stupid flight attendant. :

Mama K: Child of God, wife to S, mama to 3 little beauties and 1 handsome little guy!

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#3 of 172 Old 11-14-2006, 01:29 PM
 
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I think that there was an earlier discussion on here, someone who knew the victim of this harrassment. The woman presented herself very well in the article, just wanting policy change, the ability to donate any money, and a free trip. That's not too much to ask. I mean heck, the airline felt justified in saying, "Stick your baby under this blanket."

I hate hate HATE sleeping with my head under the covers. It gets all stuffy and the air is hot. Why would a mother force her baby to eat under an airline blanket, which by the way, may or may not have been cleaned b/w the last time it was used and the most recent use.

They were in Vermont at the time. What are Vermont's NIP laws? It is allowed in public, no restrictions.
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#4 of 172 Old 11-14-2006, 01:39 PM
 
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nak but .....

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#5 of 172 Old 11-14-2006, 01:39 PM
 
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I am sickened by the ignorance of that flight attendant and what she did was ABUSE her authority by removing someone from a flight who she decided was "offending her" ?!?!?!?! IS that part of the patriot act? :
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#6 of 172 Old 11-14-2006, 02:14 PM
 
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Omg
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#7 of 172 Old 11-14-2006, 02:15 PM
 
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Is this the same incident that a lactivist here posted about her friend being kicked off a flight a while ago? I can't find that thread. Good for her and filing charges. She's really keeping her cool and standing up for her rights.

Laurel

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#8 of 172 Old 11-14-2006, 02:49 PM
 
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Here's the link, I found it: http://www.mothering.com/discussions...d.php?t=539151

I'm guessing that this is the same incident since it dates back to Oct. 13/14th.

I'm going to PM the OP. She probably knows it's in the news, but it'd be great to get an update, too.

Laurel

BTW, anyone see the irony that this was "FREEDOM" Airlines?

Mama to 3 big boys
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#9 of 172 Old 11-14-2006, 02:54 PM
 
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I saw this on one of my mainstream boards and headed straight here- it HAS to be the same woman doesn't it?
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#10 of 172 Old 11-14-2006, 03:05 PM
 
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That makes my blood boil.

Kirsten - wife to Mark and co-sleeping, breastfeeding mother to , :, and
Photography, including Breastfeeding Photography, in my Homepage.
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#11 of 172 Old 11-14-2006, 03:27 PM
 
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Originally Posted by lissabob View Post
I saw this on one of my mainstream boards and headed straight here- it HAS to be the same woman doesn't it?
Man I hope so - I'd hate to think this is a common thing.
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#12 of 172 Old 11-14-2006, 03:32 PM
 
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Man, this really pisses me off. How heartless and cruel is that flight attendant that a nursing babe/toddler offends her?

Mama to a 3.5 yo dd
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#13 of 172 Old 11-14-2006, 04:34 PM
 
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Wow - she sounds very reasonable and not out to get anyone. Just to make sure her story is heard and that they change their policy.

It's too bad that flight attendant wasn't better disciplined.

*~* A * Mama to C and A * *~* I blog - PM me for the URL
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#14 of 172 Old 11-14-2006, 04:43 PM
 
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I wrote the Freedom Airlines rep quoted in the article. :
paul.skellon@mesa-air.com

He is out of the office until the 19th, so we can fill up his inbox:-)

Mr. Skellon,

I am very disappointed to read about another incident involving a flight attendant stripping away the rights of a breastfeeding mother and passenger. http://www.burlingtonfreepress.com/a.../NEWS/61114002

You are quoted as saying: "A breast-feeding mother is perfectly acceptable on an aircraft, providing she is feeding the child in a discreet way," According to Arizona and Vermont laws, a mother is NOT required to feed her child in a discreet way. She is exempt from so-called "indecent exposure." Breastfeeding is never "indecent." Breasts were made to breastfeed and babies are born to breastfeed. As you may know, the World Health Organization recommends breastfeeding for at least the first two years of a child's life. ( http://www.who.int/nutrition/topics/.../en/index.html)
I want to remind you of the breastfeeding laws of both Arizona and Vermont.

Ariz. Rev. Stat. Ann § 41-1443 (2006) Provides that indecent exposure does not include an act of breast-feeding by a mother and entitles a mother to breast-feed in any public place where the mother is otherwise lawfully present.

Vt. Acts, Chap. No. 117 (2002) finds that breastfeeding a child is an important, basic and natural act of nurture that should be encouraged in the interest of enhancing maternal, child and family health. The law allows a mother may breastfeed her child in any place of public accommodation in which the mother and child would otherwise have a legal right to be. The law directs the human rights commission to develop and distribute materials that provide information regarding a woman's legal right to breastfeed her child in a place of public accommodation. (S.B. 156)

I am an avid traveler and fly frequently with my daughter who is 20 months and breastfeeding. I am grateful that my breastfeeding rights have always been held intact during my air travel. I am sorely disappointed in Freedom Airlines lack of knowledge in breastfeeding laws. I am also actively involved in La Leche League and breastfeeding advocacy. I hope to see Freedom Airlines quickly rectify this situation and promote breastfeeding advocacy and awareness. You may find this page helpful as you educate your employees on breastfeeding rights. http://www.lalecheleague.org/Law/LawUS.html?m=0,1,0

Thank you.
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#15 of 172 Old 11-14-2006, 05:22 PM
 
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All right. I sent an e-mail. I have never sent a letter of this sort before so I didn't get everything across. Here's what I said:

"Mr. Skellon,

I am writing to express my concern over an article that I read in the Burlington Free Press (http://www.burlingtonfreepress.com/a.../NEWS/61114002). What specifically concerned me was a statement made by you. To quote the article, "'A breast-feeding mother is perfectly acceptable on an aircraft, providing she is feeding the child in a discreet way,' that doesn't bother others, Skellon said. 'She was asked to use a blanket just to provide a little more discretion, she was given a blanket, and she refused to use it, and that's all I know.'

The laws of Vermont allow a woman to breastfeed her child in any public place that she is allowed to be. This is not contingent on your definition of "discretion." I am not a mother, but I know that if I were, I would not want to be coerced into covering my child's head with an airline blanket.

I would like to think of Freedom Airlines as a company that is respectful of its patrons, even the children who travel. I would have wanted for you to state that your company's policy is such that a breastfeeding mother is allowed to feed her child with or without the use of covering. The statement above is a far cry from being respectful of all breastfeeding mothers and children.

It would be wonderful if your employees were educated on the acceptability of breastfeeding, so that they can be a support rather than a hinderance to future travellers.

Thank you for your attention."
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#16 of 172 Old 11-14-2006, 05:41 PM
 
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good for her for pressing charges!
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#17 of 172 Old 11-14-2006, 06:22 PM
 
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Quote:
"A breast-feeding mother is perfectly acceptable on an aircraft, providing she is feeding the child in a discreet way," that doesn't bother others, Skellon said. "She was asked to use a blanket just to provide a little more discretion, she was given a blanket, and she refused to use it, and that's all I know."
Comments like this just ENRAGE me!!!



People are so freaking clueless. And the most frustrating part is that it is that it seems like unless you really have BTDT nobody really understands how absurd this way of thinking is.

Grrr.
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#18 of 172 Old 11-14-2006, 06:43 PM
 
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I saw this in the paper this morning....didn't realize it had happened a while ago. But i was still i was DISGUSTED and irate.
I have never been asked ot cover up form nursing any of my children anywhere in VT including an airplane. Ignorance on teh part of the flight attendendant is such a shame
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#19 of 172 Old 11-14-2006, 07:25 PM
 
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I'm so happy that we now have the details of that incident so that we can now write effective letters to the airlines.

I blog traditional foods and Weston A Price at Nourished Kitchen. See my healthy recipes.
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#20 of 172 Old 11-14-2006, 08:03 PM
 
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Oh I bet if she was nursing an infant as opposed to a toddler this wouldn't have been an issue.

Unassisted birthing, atheist, poly, bi WOHM to 4 wonderful, smart homeschooling kids Wes (14) Seth (7) Pandora Moonlilly (2) and Nevermore Stargazer (11/2012)  Married to awesome SAH DH.

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#21 of 172 Old 11-14-2006, 08:56 PM
 
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I want to hear from Bullfrog! (that is who posted about this right?)
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#22 of 172 Old 11-14-2006, 10:24 PM
 
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Well - there you have it folks - in full detail


My latest information is that the Vermont Human Rights Comission is backing her!!!!
I don't know exactly to what extent (don't blast me for not having all of the details please!).

Also - she's been interviewed by all of our local stations and it's all over the news here.

Also - she's going to be on Good Morning America tomorrow (Wednesday). If that changes I'll let you know.

Go Emily Go!
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#23 of 172 Old 11-14-2006, 10:36 PM
 
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Originally Posted by bullfrog View Post
Also - she's going to be on Good Morning America tomorrow (Thursday). If that changes I'll let you know.
Ummmm.... tomorrow is Wednesday. So is it tomorrow, or Thursday. I will be home tomorrow morning and would really like to watch it. TIA


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#24 of 172 Old 11-14-2006, 10:41 PM
 
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Sorry Sorry...

Wednedsay.

(I edited.: )
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#25 of 172 Old 11-15-2006, 12:21 AM
 
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yay, i found it.

i'm so outraged, as we all are. can't wait to start penning my letter to dear ol' freedom airlines. can't wait to see good morning america tomorrow!


UNITE

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#26 of 172 Old 11-15-2006, 01:48 AM
 
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Also - she's going to be on Good Morning America tomorrow (Wednesday). If that changes I'll let you know.

Go Emily Go!
Yay! Thats awesome, will definately make a point to watch. Someone should send Goodmorning America the new Breastfeeding logo!

Mom to Joscelyne 14, Andrew 12, and Mackenzie 10 and wife to Nate.
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#27 of 172 Old 11-15-2006, 01:51 AM
 
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I just ran across a local write-up of this story in our NM news. Nothing there that wasn't said already, but it is nice to see they are covering it too (it had a link from the front page of the website)!

http://www.kobtv.com/index.cfm?viewe...28829&cat=HOME

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#28 of 172 Old 11-15-2006, 02:26 AM
 
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Oh I bet if she was nursing an infant as opposed to a toddler this wouldn't have been an issue.
I agree.
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#29 of 172 Old 11-15-2006, 02:26 AM
 
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It is on MSN too. I am writing my letter as we speak. http://msnbc.msn.com/id/15720339/

Amy, mommy to Ava, 6, Gavin, 4, Lila, 2, and Baby #4 due in early November! joy.gif
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#30 of 172 Old 11-15-2006, 03:06 AM
 
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Sent my letter to both Freedom and Delta. UGH.
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