You can't have missed the story getting loads of online attention this week about the mum who was asked to leave a cafe because her baby was crying.
The Evening Standard reports:
Critics have hit out at a south London café owner who defended asking a mother to settle her crying baby outside. The woman was in Brick House Bakery - dubbed "nappy valley" – when she was asked to temporarily leave in order to settle her three-month-old child, friends said.
A friend of the mum took to social media afterwards to make her feelings on the matter known. She wrote on Instagram:
“It was three minutes of crying which the mother was trying to settle and she was stressed about it as it was. Unfortunately it's a fact of life that a three-month-old baby cries, if this had been a first time mother she would have left in tears. We were not even offered paper bags for the food that had just been purchased. Totally on board with a crying baby being annoying but a friendly, ‘would you mind popping outside to see if baby quietens, you can leave your just purchased food here’ would have sufficed. A little compassion goes a long way.”
Predictably, this kicked off quite the debate on social media, with lots of people piling in to criticise the cafe for its approach to the new mum.
Then the cafe owner reportedly told the Daily Mail:
“Parents have a responsibility to look after their children. We are a café, not a crèche. We’ve had a number of complaints recently that our café is turning into a crèche. We don’t have a policy about crying children but as business owners we are responsible for the overall environment. She was very politely asked if she would step outside for a minute to settle the baby but she chose to leave.”
Eeksville, eh? I don't envy the cafe owner in this position – complaints that the cafe is turning into a creche would make me worry if I were trying to run a business but at the same time, mums and their babies must make up a pretty significant chuck of any cafe's business. Why side with the complainers over the mums who, shock horror, won't always be able to magically put a stop to every cry or whimper their baby makes?
In this case, I am firmly, unapologetically on the side of the mum and not the cafe owner. Can you imagine an OAP being asked to step outside because of complaints about a cafe turning into an old folks' home? That would be discrimination, pure and simple, and no-one would expect any latte-loving pensioner to comply.
But what's your view? We'd love to hear your thoughts. Leave us a comment here or come and join the conversation over on our Facebook page.