The unnamed customer was reportedly having lunch at The Veg Box Café in Canterbury, England, when she saw the employee, who had just returned from maternity leave, using a breast pump in the corner.
The offended customer reportedly left the café immediately, but returned the next day to file a complaint with the owner over the incident, claiming her “lunch was ruined.”
The owner of the restaurant, Liz Childs, defended the employee’s actions, saying “it was very discreet, she was covered and no one could see anything,” Yahoo Lifestyle reported.
Childs reportedly asked the customer, whom she called "rude," to “please don’t come back” after the alleged shaming of her staff member.
In a Facebook post, featuring Rachel McAdam’s famous breast-pumping photo shoot, the restaurant further supported its staff stating “everyone should feel comfortable breastfeeding.”
Those on social media were quick to respond, both supporting the mom and also criticizing the café’s decision to ban the complaining customer.
“When is it going to get through to people that breasts are primarily there to feed babies!?!?” one in support of the ban commented.
“Well done to staff member who has gone back to work and continuing to ‘bf’ their baby,” another encouraging the mom’s actions wrote.
“Thank you for normalising breastfeeding,” another commented.
“Some people are so clueless.. feeding a baby or pumping should come before you feeding yourself. If there was a lady sat on a bench with a low cut top on im sure nothing would be said,” a woman said.
“ok, is it ok if I take a piss anywhere too? Hey, it’s only natural. Nope, there are toilets for that kind of « natural behaviour » and that’s the respectful way to live in a society,” one against public breastfeeding wrote.
“Bodily fluids don’t belong where other people are eating. Wasn’t discreet enough if a costumer was able to see them/ notice. Do you not have a staff room?” one woman responded.
“Why would you pump in a cafe? That's not breast feeding. You're defending breast feeding with regards to someone who isn't breast feeding,” one woman wrote.
According to the U.K.'s Equality Act of 2010, businesses cannot discriminate against or prohibit mothers who are breastfeeding a child of any age.