Nurse-ins are planned at Applebee's Restaurant locations around the country on Saturday, September 8th at 12 noon in response to an incident in which mother Brooke Ryan was told to cover up while nursing her child. This was in violation of Kentucky law, which protects the right of mothers to nurse their babies in public.
The franchise operating Applebee's in central Kentucky has added quite a bit of fuel to the fire by suggesting that the solution to this 'problem' is to keep blankets stocked at their restaurants which nursing mothers could use to cover themselves. They've also accused the mother, who was carrying a card with the statute protecting her right to nurse in public, of having an "agenda." They've since issued a statement defending their actions as "consistent with creating a pleasant dining experience for all our guests."
According to Moms Rising, Senator Tom Buford, who sponsored the Kentucky law protecting nursing in public, has pledged to attend one of the nurse-ins, and suggested the following for a protest sign: "Small children are not allowed to eat in this restaurant."
Here are some links to help you find a nurse-in near you, connect with others, and have a laugh at the absurdity of it all:
- Yahoo Group for organizing the nurse-ins
- Google Map showing the nurse-in locations (thanks Angela!)
- The Thomas and King franchise email list, and Applebee's email comment form
- Cartoon from Hathor the Cow Goddess on the incident