Barnes & Noble has promised to be more friendly to breastfeeding mothers in New York, as part of a settlement with New York Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman.
As part of the deal, the book retailer will train all of its New York state employees about the company’s breastfeeding policy, in a move to ensure that women will be free to breastfeed in any of their stores without harassment. In addition, Barnes & Noble will display the international symbol for breastfeeding at the entrances to its New York stores and will pay $10,000 to Rockland County to support its Breastfeeding Promotion and Support Program.
The promise comes after the Attorney General’s office investigated an incident at one of the retailer’s locations in Nanuet, NY. Essentially a nursing mother was asked to cover up or leave the store while trying to breastfeed on March 16th. Under New York State law, mothers may breastfeed in any public location without having to cover themselves.
“Barnes & Noble stores nationwide welcome breastfeeding mothers,” explained, Mary Ellen Keating, Spokesperson for Barnes & Noble in a statement. “We’ve provided safe environments for women to breastfeed since we opened our first store. Barnes & Noble was one of the first retailers to offer baby changing stations in both our women and men’s rooms. Regrettably, a woman was asked to cover up while breastfeeding in one of our New York stores. We have addressed the situation and have taken to steps to reinforce our policies. We are committed to ensuring our stores continue to be a welcoming environment for breastfeeding mothers.”
EDITOR’S NOTE: THIS POST HAS BEEN UPDATED TO INCLUDE A STATEMENT FROM BARNES & NOBLE.