Something that puts a little more context behind this... maybe
"Discrimination Against Nursing Mothers at the International Restaurant and Food Services Show of New York"
I was truly outraged to hear this news from Lori Mason, co-owner of Klee Restaurant, who attempted to attend the International Restaurant and Food Services Show of New York.
Lori, who is a new mother to a beautiful baby girl, is quite amazing. She has been juggling the considerable challenges of running a restaurant while caring for (and nursing) her newborn.
On Sunday, she and her husband, Klee's chef Daniel Angerer, made their way to the International Restaurant and Food Service Show of New York. They packed up their baby and ventured out to enjoy the day only to be turned away and kicked out because the show forbids infants. Since Lori is nursing, she could not leave the baby at home (if you have nursed, you know that you can't go away for hours without pumping, and it's not like she's going to bring her pump with her to the Show.) She and Daniel were asked to leave. She asked to speak to a manager who also insisted that they leave.
I will be following up with the New York State Restaurant Association about this rule, which to me makes little sense and stinks of sex discrimination against nursing mothers who also happen to be restaurateurs. I understand that the NYSRA may be required to refuse admittance to minors, but an exception for nursing mothers and their infants seems logical and necessary since many of the women restaurateurs in our city are in fact mothers, too.
It's hard enough to try to do it all, without having the rug pulled out from under us. And here's a woman who's really doing it all, and wants to participate in her industry's events, and she is turned away. Disgusting.
As Lori wrote in an email to me, "Men go to show and mommy goes home with baby. Is this 2010?"
Stay tuned for more from the NYSRA.