Breastfeeding Alliance candidate upset after baby denied entry at election count centre

Alliance candidate and breastfeeding mum Fay Watson 
Digital staff

Alliance candidate and breastfeeding mum Fay Watson was refused entry into the Mid Ulster counting centre because of her six-month-old baby son.

Ms Watson arrived at the count centre at Ballymena Leisure Centre with her son Charlie but was told she could not bring him in as it was against the rules.

Children under 12 are not allowed into the count, she said.

She was told that she could leave him in the canteen with someone. However, Ms Watson said that as she is a breastfeeding mother she thought an exception could have been made.

“He said it doesn’t matter. There is no exception. He can’t come in…You can leave him in a café with somebody if you want."  

Ms Watson said she stood outside with her child for half an hour until she was eventually allowed to bring him in.

"I was outside the building for about half an hour until I was eventually allowed in," she said.

"I'm very grateful that they sorted it out for me but it was very distressing.

"I knew that children under 12 weren't allowed to gain entry, but in the case of a breastfeeding woman I thought I would be able to take him in because there's no other way to feed him."

"Obviously I can't leave him up in the cafe with a stranger. It was very upsetting to me," she added.

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