Alyssa Milano has had a busy morning. Busier than she had planned, when security at London Heathrow Airport confiscated Milano’s breast milk without a word and secretly disposed of it. Following the incident, Alyssa, understandably outraged more from the disrespect and the lack of communication than from the actual deed, took her fight to Twitter in a series of posts that made her disgust clear.
The confiscation of Milano’s breast milk stemmed from a standing rule that each passenger is limited to liquids not exceeding 100 ml (3.4 ounces). In cases of breast milk, the ban is lifted in the event that the passenger is accompanying a baby. Upon learning of the regulation’s exception, Alyssa responded that she would not have needed to carry the breast milk if she’d had her baby with her on the plane.
(1 of 2) @HeathrowAirport just took my pumped breast milk away. 10 ounces. Gone. Not okay.
— Alyssa Milano (@Alyssa_Milano) April 9, 2015
Even after security representatives explained the rule to her, Ms. Milano pressed the point that the lack of communication in particular is a problem that still needs to be addressed.
“I would have happily spread milk in different containers (which I travel with) to comply to those liquid rules. Instead, milk was taken away with no discussion. Shampoo, lotions, etcetera were simply tested and handed back with no issue. Makes no sense at all.” In the U.S., breast milk is classified as a medically necessary liquid and is therefore exempt from the rule. The Transportation Security Administration will screen the breast milk and return it to passengers.
“Every ounce of milk I’m able to produce for my child is nothing short of a miracle and to watch that milk be thrown away without any regard for my baby, was heartbreaking,” Alyssa posted to her Twitter followers.
Ms. Milano acknowledges that the fault doesn’t solely lie with airport personnel and that the rules are in need of revision. Alyssa hoped that the incident would create further dialogue and create a better situation for mothers and infants, when traveling via airlines.
Alyssa further commented on the difficulty, as well as the joy, of providing breast milk for her children. Ms. Milano has a long history as a proponent of breastfeeding. Alyssa often breastfeeds on the set, during make-up and production preparations, as seen in the photos she posts to her Instagram account.
“I just think it’s important for women to feel comfortable feeding their babies wherever,” Ms. Milano said. “If we’re in public, we shouldn’t have to go in the bathroom.”
[Photo courtesy of Ben Gabbe/Getty Images]