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The British lawmaker is reprimanded for bringing her baby to a debate




About a third of British lawmakers are women. But female lawmakers in Britain and in legislatures around the world have long faced barriers, including a lack of paid maternity leave. They have also been exposed to high levels of vitriol and abuse, both online and in person. In 2019, 19 female members of the British Parliament said they had decided not to seek re-election. Some said abuse was involved in that decision.

Alex Davies-Jones, a Labor lawmaker, said in an interview that she met Mr. Hoyle, the speaker, when she joined Parliament in 2019 and that he assured her that she could breastfeed her new baby in rooms, if necessary. Debates can last six hours or more, putting young breastfeeding mothers in a difficult position, she said.

That seems like a throwback to the progress we have made, she said. Parliament, she said, should be a guiding light in terms of equality and representation and set an example of what companies should do.

Mr Hoyle told Parliament he had heard a number of views from lawmakers with the babies. This Chamber should be able to function professionally and without worries, he said. However, sometimes there may be times when the chairman may exercise discretion assuming the business is not concerned.

In 2018, Sen. Tammy Duckworth, an Illinois Democrat, became the first U.S. lawmaker to bring a baby to the Senate floor when she arrived with her then-10-day-old daughter Maile, in retreat to vote against confirmation of a new administrator. of NASA.

Maile’s arrival came after months of behind-the-scenes negotiations in the Senate that had previously barred children from going to the podium. The senators voted unanimously that they could bring babies up to one year old into the room.

What if there are 10 babies on the Senate floor? Orrin G. Hatch, then a Republican senator from Utah, asked at the time, according to The Associated Press. Sen. Amy Klobuchar, a Democrat from Minnesota, responded: That would be wonderful and a pleasure.




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