NGO Apologizes for Posting Breast-feeding Picture Online

November 30, 2015
Editor: Eileen Cheng

A photo shows a woman breast-feeding her kid on subway. It was posted on the weibo account of bjtale.com, attracting much criticism. [weibo.com]

A nongovernmental organization (NGO) apologized Sunday for posting a picture of a mother breast-feeding her child on the Beijing subway and accusing her of "exposing sexual organs in public areas."

"We apologize for posting (the picture) 'Breast-feeding in Beijing subway' and its social impact. We are not against but respect breast-feeding … The purpose of posting the picture is to call for a discussion of whether it is proper to breast-feed in public without any cover," Beijing-based NGO BJtale wrote on its Sina Weibo.

The picture posted on Friday showed a mother breast-feeding her child in a subway car with a caption saying that the mother should mind her behavior and not expose her sexual organs in a public area.

"Hey, mother, is it proper for you to do this? Or should I remind you that you are taking the subway in Beijing, not the bus in your village," read the post, which was later deleted, news website guancha.cn reported.

Hundreds of net users reposted the picture, and more than 40,000 participated in the discussion of whether it is proper for mothers to breast-feed their children in public. Some net users criticized the NGO for not respecting the mother, and some contended that a mother should be able to feed her child whenever and wherever he or she is hungry.

The NGO explained in its Sunday apology that it directly reposted the pictures and copied comments from some net users, saying that the organization believes that mothers should breast-feed with a cover if conditions are suitable, and that otherwise mothers should try to face away from others when breast-feeding their children.

China still lacks public facilities for mothers to nurse their infants, in spite of flash mobs held in some Chinese cities to draw awareness to breast-feeding.

The NGO - a grass-roots organization that has set up several welfare activities - had deleted all the posts as of the press time, and its last post on Sunday said that it has closed the Sina Weibo account to think over its mistake.

(Source: Global Times)

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