WE condemns DUP MP’s archaic attitude on breastfeeding
The Women’s Equality Party today called out as embarrassing the comments made by East Antrim MP Sammy Wilson, who described women who would breastfeed in the House of Commons as ‘exhibitionists', and demanded breastfeeding be done in private to deter ‘voyeurs’.
“Sammy Wilson’s archaic attitude to breastfeeding fundamentally misunderstands that it is an act of caring for a child, not a method of attention-seeking,” said WEP leader Sophie Walker.
“I am appalled that Wilson felt free to air such views on a national radio show, and hope that those listening were also embarrassed by his misogynist views on working motherhood.”
Wilson argued that female MPs had other places where they could breastfeed, away from the main House of Commons chamber. “This shows his ignorance of both the workings of Westminster, where debates can run for hours, and of a child’s need to breastfeed, which is immediately and often,” Walker continued. “It is unsurprising that Northern Ireland’s breastfeeding rates are lower than the rest of the UK, when men like Wilson are given space to air such views.”
She added: “Next week is World Breastfeeding Week (1–7 August) and we should all take the time to share its themes this year of valuing wellbeing from the start of life, respecting each other and caring for the world we share. These are lessons Sammy Wilson should have learned by now.”
Published July 25, 2016