A Texas mother says that she was left in tears after she was forced to leave the Nessler Family Aquatic Center in Texas City, Texas because she was breastfeeding her ten-month-old son.
Misty Daugereaux was enjoying a day at the pool with her two children and nephew when she discretely began to breastfeed her son. A lifeguard approached her and told her she had to cover up. When she refused, a manager came over and told that if she didn't cover up her breasts, she would have to leave the pool.
They began to argue and the manager called the police, claiming that Daugereaux had cursed at her and the lifeguard. Daugereaux told the officer that she did not swear at them, but he told her that she had to leave.
Even though it is legal for a mother to breastfeed her child in public, she did not want to make a big scene in front of her kids and left the pool in tears.
"I've tried to be as discreet as possible whenever it comes to breastfeeding already. I understand views and people's opinions," Daugereaux said following the incident. "But not to the point where you get kicked out of a public space because you decide to feed your child."
Daugereaux shared her story on the pool's Facebook, writing that she is "so hurt, embarrassed and ashamed that this is what Texas City stands for."
After her story went viral, a group of mothers from the area organized a protest outside of the pool. They staged a 'nurse-in' and sat outside breastfeeding their children, sharing the photos on Facebook.
"I think it's especially ironic that there are women in swimsuit tops that barely cover their breasts and it's shameful to see a mother feeding her child? It doesn't make sense," Angela Dunn, a mother, and grandmother who attended the protest, told KPRC-TV.
Texas City Mayor Matthew T. Doyle released a statement apologizing for what happened and promised that city officials are reviewing the incident.
"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."