A student led breastfeeding campaign, “When Nurture Calls” is causing a stir in Texas. The breastfeeding campaign, created by University of North Texas graphic-art majors Johnathan Wenske and Kris Haro, aims to ensure a mother’s right to breastfeed in public. The posters depict young nursing mothers hiding in bathroom stalls to feed their babies. The body copy on the ad asks: “Would you eat here?”
“To start off, there would be print ads placed on the back of bathroom stalls,” the breastfeeding campaign’s web-release explains. “These ads create a ‘reflection’ of the stall facing it, and show mothers who have been harassed to the point where they feel they have no other option but to nurture their baby in the restroom as to not offend anyone.”
The first image, posted on Facebook by a blogger known as Mama Bean, received about 8,000 shares right away and incited a dialogue in the comments area that were both incredibly supportive and incredibly supportive. The posters were described as encouraging women to expose their “sex objects” and others called nursing in public trashy. These are the exact sentiments the student led breastfeeding campaign is fighting against. A majority of the over 2,200 Facebook comments were supportive of women nursing in public.
Johnathan and Kris, both 20, said they were inspired to launch the campaign after reading a story from 2011 where a breastfeeding mother was harassed in a Target store. “We thought that was totally messed-up,” Johnathan told Yahoo Shine. The pro-breastfeeding pair decided to run with it when they caught wind of the state bill that was introduced in 2013 by Representative Jessica Farrar. Texas has laws that only loosely support breastfeeding women. The breastfeeding campaign attempted to help to pass HB1706 which would have protected breastfeeding mothers from discrimination and harassment should they choose to nurse in public. The bill hoped to strengthen the right to breastfeed and prevent future harassment like what happened at the Target store. That bill fizzled in the legislative session the first time through, but a spokesperson for the representative said the idea will be re-introduced into legislation in January of next year.
Huffington Post reported of the breastfeeding campaign, “In partnership with breastfeeding advocacy group La Leche League, the campaign hopes to drum up support for HB 1706, a bill in the Texas state legislature that would protect breastfeeding mothers from harassment and discrimination.” The press information presented by Johnathan Wenske, however, states that La Leche League is not partnered with “When Nurture Calls” at this time; the advocacy group is also actively working to promote Farrar’s pro-breastfeeding bill though.
What do you think of the “When Nurture Calls” student led breastfeeding campaign posters?
[Campaign poster photos by Johnathan Wenske/Kris Haro]