Mothers and advocates gather to celebrate the 20th anniversary of a law protecting a woman's right to breastfeed anywhere on Friday, Aug. 8, 2014. (Credit: WCBS 880/Monica Miller)
NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Mothers and breastfeeding advocates gathered Friday to celebrate the 20th anniversary of a state law protecting a woman’s right to breastfeed anywhere, WCBS 880’s Monica Miller reported.
“It’s natural, it’s cheaper and easier,” one woman said.
More than 100 mothers jumped on the A train for Friday’s breatsfeeding “subway caravan.”
The law allows women to breastfeed in public without being harassed or facing a fine for indecent exposure.
“That means they can breastfeed in the subway, they can breastfeed in the park, they can breastfeed in Barnes & Noble,” advocate Theresa Landau said.
As Miller reported, the advocates say it’s not simply a life choice, but a public health issue.
Researchers say breastfeeding prevents infant deaths and saves $13 billion a year in the United States.
“It helps support decreasing infection, it helps support brain development,” Aletha Maybank with the Health Department said.
The controversial city-wide program, Latch On NYC, took effect in September 2012 and aimed as supporting mothers who choose to breastfeed their newborns.
But despite the law and city-wide push, some see breastfeeding as an act to be done in private.
“It galls me to know that we have a naked cowboy in New York, he’s not breastfeeding, but for me, who’s doing something natural, I’m discriminated against,” one mother said.