Court Officer Embarrasses Breastfeeding Mom to the Point of Tears (VIDEO)

jeanna harris baby breastfeeding mom kicked out of courtJust two months after a similar story out of Connecticut made headlines, a woman in Mobile, Alabama named Jeanna Harris is considering legal action after she was forced to stop breastfeeding her child in a courtroom. She says she was nursing her 3-month-old baby while waiting for a proceeding in child support court when a court officer quickly approached her and told her to move to another area of the building. Harris said she protested but eventually got up and moved, left "embarrassed" and in tears. Horrible.

In their defense, court officials claim they were asked by other people in the courtroom to ask Harris to move, and they provided her with a different location to feed. But sorry, that's just not good enough an explanation. Other people's discomfort with breastfeeding is no excuse for blatantly disregarding the law.

Yup, according to Alabama Statute Section 22-1-13, a mother may breastfeed her child in any location, public or private, where the mother is otherwise authorized to be present. Therefore, there's absolutely no acceptable reason Harris should've been shuttled out of the courtroom as if she was doing something illegal or inappropriate. Ironically, it appears that these court officials failed to uphold the law!

More from The Stir: Woman Sues Boss for Making Her Pump Breast Milk Under Disgusting Conditions

How ridiculous and frustrating. And worse yet, how unnerving that this is something that seems to continue to happen! What's it going to take for us to not just be more comfortable as a society with breastfeeding in public but for courts of law to allow nursing moms their rights

Thank goodness Harris has decided to step up and potentially take legal action. Because while it's unfortunate that it may have to come to a court battle, it's obvious there's a battle to fight to ensure breastfeeding mothers are treated with respect, dignity, and protected under the law.

How do you feel about what happened to Jeanna Harris? What do you think can/should be done to protect women like her?

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Roxygurl Roxygurl

The kid shouldn't have been there to begin with. Its court for crying out loud find a ducking babysitter

nonmember avatar Nicole

Good for her!!! Why do people care! Shows on TV are worse then a nursing mother! I'm sure she was covered up! If you uncomfortable then you can leave! And roxygirl why should she have to pay someone to take care of her baby?!?!?

Sirena Robinson

I have mixed feelings. Most courthouses don't allow young children there which would mean she didn't have the right to nurse there. Regardless of that, I don't think we really have enough information on what happened. Did the baliff offer her a private room? Use of the judge's chambers where there's a comfy chair and a door instead of a hard bench? Or did they try to make her use a bathroom or go outside? Depending on what they offered, I think perception changes. If the baliff offered use of a private, comfortable room so the woman could nurse in peace, without noise, then I see nothing wrong with it. Until I know all the details, I reserve judgment on this one.

Kattey Kattey

The issue, Sirena, is that it wasn't an "offer" it was a demand. I was never comfortable NIP and would have appreciated an offer of a clean quiet place. But to be told to move because some people are prudes, well, that's totally different.


What interests me is that is was court, but it was child support court. I have no experience with it, but are children sometimes required in child support court? All I can think is "how much would it suck to HAVE to take my kid top court because I can't find a babysitter?"

happi... happinessforyou

IDK... are kids supposed to be in court? Is it a child-friendly environment? Could the mom have brought someone with her to help her so she could nurse but still be in the court room when she needed to be there? I know it's legal etc... but still time and place....

jrphelps jrphelps

I get so tired of people saying, "The baby shouldn't have been there."  The mother has a LEGAL right to bring her baby with her.  What the baliff did was ILLEGAL!  If the mother is allowed to be there, so is her child.


And for those who say the baby shouldn't have been there, here is the exact law as stated above: according to Alabama Statute Section 22-1-13, a mother may breastfeed her child in any location, public or private, where the mother is otherwise authorized to be present.

Roxygurl Roxygurl

No jr the mother didn't have a legal right to bring her child there.



There are loses about where a child is not supposed to be, like a liquor store or adult store and a child does not belong at court unless said child is testifying or on trial.



The lady was out of line and shouldn't have been there to begin with so I don't feel an ounce of empathy for her. Her child should have been left elsewhere.

Roxygurl Roxygurl

Nicole because there are some places children aren't welcome and court is one of them. She didn't have to pay for a sitter, she could have chosen to stay home instead and faced the consequences of not showing up to court.

amber... amberdotsmom

Actually she does have a "legal" right to have the child there - it's not illegal to have a child in a courthouse or court room just as it's not illegal to have them in, say, a five star restaurant.  What you're talking about is.........it's against policy and a policy is not a law.  I can ignore your policy of no shoes and be asked to leave your store but I can't be arrested for no shoes (unless I refuse to leave which is different).  So if there's a policy that kids aren't allowed then she should have been stopped at the door or shortly after arriving and told that kids under X age aren't allowed in the courtroom.  If the story is reported accurately not only did that not happen but the only reason given was the breast feeding and for that to be the only reason she's asked to leave is actually illegal.

nhamp... nhampton401

Roxy you're ridiculous. I hope you never have children. If the child wasn't allowed to be there then they would've told her that at the door. It's not illegal to take a child to court with you but what these people did was illegal. I would've held my ground and not moved. She had every right to be there just as everyone else did. If they didn't like it then they shouldn't have been starring.

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