A mother has been banned from breastfeeding her child after getting a tattoo.
According to the Daily Mail, a federal judge in Australia banned a mother from breastfeeding her 11-month-old child because she got a tattoo nine months after the child was born. Judge Matthew Myers told the Federal Court that the tattoo, which the mother got four weeks prior to the case being heard, put the infant at risk of obtaining an infection.
Myers made the decision despite the fact that the mother had underwent several tests to check for infections such as hepatitis and HIV, and all the results came back negative. The judge ruled the tests inconclusive, and upheld his ruling that she was banned from breastfeeding, according to ABC.
Dr. Karleen Gribble, from the University of Western Sydney, and other breastfeeding advocates, are shocked at Myers’ decision.
“I think if it were reasonable then we would have very, very many women in Australia who would be quite horrified and perhaps child protection authorities should be taking action because many mothers who are breastfeeding get tattoos — very often of their children’s names,” Gribble said.
“Tattooing is a regulated industry, so if you go to a tattoo parlour that is reputable then the chances [of contracting an infection] are very low,” Chief executive officer of the Australian Breastfeeding Association Rebecca Naylor said. “I think unless there’s evidence that she has contracted an infection as a result of that tattoo, then it is unreasonable.”
“Tattooing in and of itself, as long as it’s done in reputable way and that the infection control procedures are followed, the risk is low and so no, we would absolutely encourage women who have had tattoos to breastfeed their babies for as long as they choose to,” she added.
Naylor continued by questioning women breastfeeding when they have been exposed to other sorts of risks.
“Does that mean that women who expose themselves to any sort of risks around the contraction of a blood-borne virus… shouldn’t be allowed to breast feed?” she said. “Women do need to be careful they’re feeding a child, it’s going to be their main source of nutrition up until they’re 12 months of age, so you do have to be careful. But it doesn’t mean that you have to wrap yourself in glad wrap.”
An urgent appeal will be heard by a full bench of the Family Court on Friday.
Do you agree with the judge’s decision to ban the mother from breastfeeding because she got a tattoo? Leave your comments below.
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