Mother sues Meijer contending they did not provide proper facilities for her to breastfeed

Posted at 5:31 PM, Jul 13, 2016
and last updated 2016-07-13 17:31:57-04

It's a breast-pumping battle between a mother and a grocery store giant in metro Detroit.

The mother claims Meijer did not accommodate her needs and created a hostile work environment.  The company says they followed their policy.

The allegations by the local mother took place back in 2013 at a Meijer in Swartz Creek, but the lawsuit was filed just a few weeks ago.

According to this complaint filed on June 30th Rachel Keesling, who was a breastfeeding mother back in 2013, says there wasn't a place for her to pump at the Meijer in Genessee County she worked at.

She says she was forced to do it in the bathroom and even in the store's computer server room which, she later found out, had a surveillance camera.

The lawsuit includes claims of intentional infliction of emotional stress, invasion of privacy and sexual discrimination.

At the time, the nursing mother worked at the Meijer as a part-time clerk and claims while struggling to find places to pump, she sometimes returned late from her breaks and as a result her pay was docked.

We did look into the federal law; it says employers are required to provide a private place, other than a bathroom, for pumping.

We reached out to Meijer today, they gave us this statement:

We value all of our team members, including our nursing mothers. Our policy is to provide nursing mothers at all of our stores or facilities with the time, appropriate space (not a rest room) and amenities to express and store milk. We don’t comment on pending litigation so I can’t discuss details of the specific case.

Keesling is suing for more than $25,000. We have reached out to her. We're waiting to hear back.