Nursing Mom Forced Into 'Dehumanizing' Closet to Pump Her Breast Milk (VIDEO)

janitor room pump

It's a common dilemma: Mom at airport needs to pump milk. So where does she do it? Well, at LAX recently, one mom named Haley Picchini says she was forced to pump in a place that made her skin crawl: a cramped, dirty janitor's closet.

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Haley ended up pumping here after searching high and low for a cleaner, more private place; she'd even paid $50 for a pass into the private United Airlines lounge. From there, she was directed into the janitor's closet.

Talk about gross ... that's just not right. But that's the sad state of pumping accommodations in most places today.

It's particularly frustrating since the Affordable Care Act had pushed for better pumping accommodations for moms. And while that victory focused largely on pumping accommodations at work, other public areas like airports have been pushed to step it up too: In California, in fact, a new law requires airport nursing rooms by January 2016. But so far, there's only one open at LAX -- and given the size of that airport, that's hardly enough!

Airports are every breastfeeding mom's worst nightmare. Because there's definitely no room to pump on the plane, so you've gotta find a place in the airport. Power outlets are rarely inside stalls, so I've definitely pumped right out there by the sinks with little girls washing their hands staring at me. It's mortifying! 

Now, everyone knows you shouldn't feed your kids in a bathroom -- or breastfeed a baby, for that matter. Yet pumping is just one of those topics that's rarely addressed, and really needs more attention, since pumping moms need better accommodations, too.

More from The Stir: 7 Tips for Breastfeeding & Pumping While Traveling by Plane

I, for one, think pumping accommodations should be held to the same high standards as those for breastfeeding, because the issue of cleanliness and comfort both still apply to pumping moms 100 percent. In fact, I might even argue that pumping moms need better accommodations more so than moms who are breastfeeding, because a pumping mom is half naked so she really needs privacy. 

Plus, unlike a baby who's latched straight onto a mother's breast, a pumping mom must set her pump equipment and containers down on various surfaces. So if those surfaces aren't so clean, it's a major problem.

Let's just hope this incident prompts the LAX -- and other places, for that matter -- to step it up and start offering better accommodations to pumping moms. Check out more on this story in the video below:

What's the worst place you've had to pump?

 

Image via CBS Los Angeles

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