Mum banned from breastfeeding at hair salon

A Melbourne mum has been left 'embarrassed and humiliated' after she claims she was banned from a hair salon for breastfeeding her baby.

Mum banned from breast feeding at hair salon

Mum banned from breast feeding at hair salon

Cassie Hanlin, 38, began feeding her five-month-old daughter, Natasha, while getting a haircut at Tadaro Hairdressing in Eltham, because she was hungry and had started to cry.

While Cassie breastfed for 25 minutes, her hairdresser moved onto another client.

"I started to breastfeed her, and the next thing I know the hairdresser had walked away," she said.

"After 25 minutes, another hairdresser came up to me to tell me that the hairdresser who initially began cutting my hair couldn't cut my hair anymore because she had another client."

She had taken care to cover herself up, but Cassie said she was told the hairdresser could not continue with the cut until she had finished feeding her baby due to privacy reasons.

"The hairdresser indicated to me that as long as I was feeding they couldn't cut my hair. They didn't give me a reason."

"I got the impression that because I was breastfeeding her that they didn't want to cut my hair or want anything to do with me."

Shocked and stunned by the incident, Cassie said she refused an offer from a junior to finish her hair cut before storming out.

"I felt humiliated when I had to walk out of the hairdressing salon with wet hair and my hair semi-cut. It was quite distressing."

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The salon says it did not want hair falling on the baby's head.

"If anything we were trying to make her feel more comfortable by leaving her alone, we didn't want to pressure her into hurrying up," said hairdresser Zoe Brannelli.

"In all honesty I think it was blown out of proportion because she had a baby on the boob."

Cassie said her family called the salon to make a complaint the following day, but she has had no apology.

Instead, Cassie said the salon owner left an answerphone message to say she was no longer welcome at the salon.

"They have since left messages on my phone saying you are never welcome in the salon again. It's private property, and if I took it any further they were going to sue me," she said.

"It's a natural thing to do is breastfeed your baby. She was hungry and she was crying, and the best way to stop a baby crying is to give her a feed."

It is illegal to discriminate against a woman for breastfeeding in public in Victoria.

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