A mother has been left outraged after being told to ‘cover up or face a wall’ while breastfeeding her son in a Storrington restaurant.
Lisa Dixon, from Pulborough, was out to lunch with a friend at the Appia restaurant in Old Mill Drive on Friday, October 2.
The 23-year-old said while breastfeeding her one-year-old son, Ethan, inside the restaurant she was told by a waitress to ‘cover up or sit and face the wall’.
She said: “It was the first time I have been in there.
“I am really angry. How dare someone ask me to cover my son’s head up to eat?
“There was literally just us and another couple in the restaurant. If my son needs feeding then my son needs to eat.
I am really angry. How dare someone ask me to cover my son’s head up to eat?Lisa Dixon
“She (the waitress) just came up and said you can’t breastfeed unless you either cover up or you sit and face the wall away from customers.
“I just got up, gave my friend £20 to pay for my lunch and walked out.”
Alfredo Paradiso, owner of Appia, admitted that Mrs Dixon was asked to ‘cover up’ but denied she was asked to face a wall.
He said he would not stop women from breastfeeding their children in his restaurant.
He said: “I have got nothing against mothers breastfeeding their babies as long as they are discreet and they cover themselves up.
“I said to my wife to go tell her to cover herself up because there were other people in the restaurant.
“All my wife asked her to do was cover everything up because her breast was fully out in the open. We thought this was the best thing to do.
“She was here with her friend and there was no-one here at the time but when other people came in my wife said can you cover up or turn the other way?
“It is not like we stopped her breastfeeding her baby. All my wife asked her was to be discreet and cover it up.”
Mr Paradiso said there had been no complaint from the other customers in the restaurant, but that it had been his decision.
He said: “I have got to look after my business.
“If you went out for a meal the last thing you would want to see is someone with their breasts out feeding their baby.
“I said do feed the baby, I am not going to stop you but please try and be discreet for other customers.
“If I am wrong I am wrong, but I can’t see anything wrong to say please cover yourself up while you are breastfeeding your baby.
“You have got to show decency to other people in the restaurant.”
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