TAYLOR (WWJ/AP) – A bus driver in suburban Detroit ordered a woman who was breast-feeding her newborn to cover up while nursing or get off the vehicle.
Afrykayn Moon, 32, held her ground during the June 24 confrontation, but the SMART system bus driver refused to leave the bus stop in Taylor until Moon’s baby was done feeding.
“I had him in a football wrap,” Moon told the Detroit Free Press of her son. “She (the driver) wasn’t seeing much.”
Security officers from the nearby Southland Center mall boarded at the next stop and ordered the mother and child off the bus, Taylor police told WXYZ-TV.
SMART spokeswoman Beth Gibbons said the company will remind its 600 drivers that women can breast-feed on buses. The bus driver is on paid leave, pending an investigation.
Laws protect nursing mothers from indecent-exposure charges, but little else.
On Friday, Moon, who is part of the Black Mothers’ Breastfeeding Association, and others plan to stage a nurse-in at SMART facilities in Troy and in her hometown of Taylor.
“It’s not dirty. If enough people start to nurse their children in public, this kind of stuff would stop,” she told the Free Press.
Democratic state Sen. Rebekah Warren of Ann Arbor is reintroducing legislation to prevent discrimination against breast-feeding women in Michigan. It was introduced in 2009 but didn’t advance in the Legislature.
The Associated Press contibuted to this report.