Airline cause outrage after warning breastfeeding mothers they may be asked to cover up
18 July 2019, 14:52 | Updated: 18 July 2019, 14:54
Dutch airline KLM has enraged mothers after they tweeted their breastfeeding policy.
Airline KLM warned that they may ask breastfeeding mothers to “cover up” while breastfeeding during a flight if it “offends” other passengers.
The Dutch airline, Royal Dutch Airlines (KLM), made the admission on Twitter, replying to a woman’s enquiry about their policy.
The woman, Heather Yemm, asked: “What is your policy regarding breastfeeding?”
To this, the airline’s official page replied: “Breastfeeding is permitted at KLM flights.
Breastfeeding is permitted at KLM flights. However, to ensure that all our passengers of all backgrounds feel comfortable on board, we may request a mother to cover herself while breastfeeding, should other passengers be offended by this.— Royal Dutch Airlines (@KLM) July 16, 2019
“However, to ensure that all our passengers of all backgrounds feel comfortable on board, we may request a mother to cover herself while breastfeeding, should other passengers be offended by this.”
Heather, and others, were left outraged at the response.
Heather wrote back to the airline: “Do you think it's acceptable to ask a mother to cover her child while feeding? Why would breastfeeding cause anyone to feel offended? I'm very curious to know how feeding a child could be viewed as offensive?”
Another person commented: “This is complete bulls**t.
“Anyone offended by breastfeeding, can close their eyes, change seats, look in a different direction, take a different flight, see a therapist or p**s off. Ones ‘cultural sensibilities’ are not more important than the child’s need of food. Ever.”
While the majority of responses call out the airline for the request, some people have defended KLM.
One person said asking a breastfeeding woman to cover herself while feeding is “not unreasonable”.
They wrote: “@KLM is correct. As a woman and medical professional I have no problem with breastfeeding but asking women to just throw something like a burp cloth over them whilst doing so is not an unreasonable request!”
Replying to another tweet, the airline wrote: “To keep the peace on board, in such cases we will try to find a solution that is acceptable to everyone and that shows respect for everyone’s comfort and personal space.
"This may involve a request to a mother to cover her breast.”