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Whoa, Momma!

Sharon Kennedy Wynne, Tracey Henry and Suzannah DiMarzio

Do breastfeeding moms deserve a special break from jury duty?



Mom_jury A bill now making its way through the Florida House of Representatives would allow women who are breastfeeding to be excused from serving on a jury. If it passes the House and the Senate and gets signed into law, Florida would be the 13th state to have such an exemption.

Now, I am all for making things a little easier for breastfeeding Mommas. When you get a ticket for trying to be safe while breastfeeding, that seems a bit outrageous to me.

But this attempt by Rep. Franklin Sands, D-Plantation, to give breastfeeding moms a break from jury duty seems like the House minority leader is (ahem) milking the whole motherhood-and-apple-pie thing. There already is a law on the books that exempts from jury service any parents who aren't employed full time but have custody of young children.

As new mom Rep. Anitere Flores, R-Miami, said during a committee vote on the bill, sure seems like there are more important issues that the Legislature should be discussing.

What if, instead of an excuse from serving, breastfeeding Mommas were given some accommodation? For instance, how about setting aside a quiet room in the courthouse where new moms can go pump during breaks? Trust me, just being able to do that would be a big help for most moms.

But don't exclude us from the jury pool. After all, a Momma is the ideal juror: She hears everything, has eyes in the back of her head, and always knows what the right punishment should be.

-- Sherry Robinson

[Last modified: Thursday, May 13, 2010 11:03am]


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