Edgars breastfeeding picket was a ‘win’

Published Mar 14, 2016


Cape Town - They didn’t burn their maternity bras or squirt milk on clothing, but their point – don’t discriminate against breastfeeding moms – has been made.

So says a group of about 30 moms who staged a protest at Edgars in Cavendish Square on Sunday in support of the young mother who was banned the store for trying to feed her one-month-old baby.

Read: Breastfeeding protest to hit Edgars store

Tasneem Botha took to social media last week to complain about the treatment she received from Edgars staff.

She said staff first blocked her from changing her baby’s nappy “in a quiet corner” of the store, and when she then tried to breastfeed her baby, she was told to leave.

Her post sparked the idea for the picket, organised by the Normalise Breastfeeding SA movement.

Tasneem was not present, after saying she did not want publicity.

The moms held a one-hour sit-in, breastfed their babies and enjoyed muffins provided by the store.

Read: Store bans breastfeeding mother

Anèl Olsson, of Normalise Breastfeeding SA, said the aim was to raise awareness about difficulties moms still face when trying to feed their babies in public.

“Today was positive, a win for our organisation and also a win for the mother who was discriminated against. I’m pleased to know Edcon will be more breastfeeding friendly because of everything that has happened. It’s just perfect.”

Mom Natasha Karenyi, 37, who breastfed her year old son Conrad, says “breast is best” and that people should support them.

“I thought Tasneem Botha was treated unfairly. As a mother of two children I know what it’s like to breastfeed in the most awkward of places. People should support this. All children have been breastfed in some or other way, so why is it offensive?” says Natasha.

Edgars has apologised to Tasneem, and on Sunday opened their doors to the protesting moms.

Edcon CEO Bernie Brookes said they would soon start an in-house training and educational programme to ensure customers are not treated unfairly.

Daily Voice

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