Theresa Phillips flipped out her phone and started to record when she was approached in an “unfriendly” manner while breastfeeding on Kiva Elementary School’s playground during recess.

In the clip Assistant Principal, Matt Gromek confronted the nursing mother during a scheduled visit to her daughter’s fourth-grade class last week.

There were first-graders playing right near the mom, and a confrontation ensued when school officials offered Phillips the option of feeding in a private area, reports AZ Central.

Phillips said she wasn’t breaking any rules, so she didn’t see a problem with staying right there on the playground. The mom asked in the video:

“You can send me into a different room? I don’t need privacy.”

Gromek responded, “I would prefer that.”

Watch the video below:

Matt Gromek harasses a mother nursing her 9 week old infant.If you ARE or know someone who is a local nursing mother, please join us as we feed our children. See the event in the comments. Kiva Elementary Family Friendly Nurse-in.

Posted by Theresa Phillips on Thursday, April 4, 2019

The upset mother concluded the video by stating that she had the right to breastfeed anywhere in public without being shamed for public indecency. She said:

“I am feeding my child, it’s completely legal in a public environment. You are making a huge mistake. You should apologize right now.”

Phillips continued:

“I am so upset right now. All of these children’s lives right now are being disrupted, because you personally are uncomfortable.”

She wrote on Facebook in response to the incident:

Matt Gromek harasses a mother nursing her 9 week old infant.

In the comments section of her post, Phillips asked her followers to share the video because “this has to stop.” She also staged a nurse-in to protest on behalf of nursing mothers.

News 12

In a statement, the Scottsdale Unified School District told News 12, that school staff never asked Phillips to stop feeding her child. Officials simply offered her a private place to nurse:

She was simply offered an alternative space because they recognized that not all activities are age-appropriate.

The backlash that followed the video sparked a conversation about moms breastfeeding on school playgrounds. One mom who supported Phillips wrote:

I hope your daughter wasn’t negatively affected at school now by kids thinking this is something to shame a mother about or some scandalous act. They made a huge spectacle when most the kids were happily playing, completely oblivious to the hungry baby.

However, another parent slammed her actions:

I’m not a mama shamer but she is at a school park with a bunch of other little kids who might not even see their own parents naked. I wore 2 tops and never let all hang out around others kids. Still respect other people’s kids? Not just stand up for yours?

Should the parent visiting the school, have breastfed her infant in view of a group of young children during recess?

Watch the video below:

About the author

Tiffani is a writer for Dearly. She is from New York City. Prior to working for Dearly she covered fashion news and managed social media for various digital media outlets.

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14 Replies to “Mom Films Moment She’s Asked to Stop Breastfeeding on School Playground. She’s Calling It Harassment”

  • s Leigh 2 years ago

    People who think their kids haven’t seen a boob plainly haven’t walked past the Victoria Secret ads on the wall at the mall on the way to the playground. But I guess since that is about SEX it’s okay. Shame, shame, shame.

  • Anita 2 years ago

    She is being ridiculous! She should not be there doing that! Yes, there are Victoria Secret ads but this is a school! Have respect for the children!

    • Anonymous 2 years ago

      Yes Anita I agree with you, no need to have these young children stare at the “lady”. This woman has no decency it is irrelevant
      how she feels worry about the impressions left in these children’s young minds !!!!!

  • Marion Monroe 2 years ago

    People need to have a little consideration it is natural however not every child or parent want a public display of a woman’s breast. I do not believe that a playground filled with elementary school children is the place for this action. She was given the option of a private area or she could have pumped and fed the child by bottle. Please be a little considerate not everyone believes the same as her and they have rights also.

  • Jamie 2 years ago

    Agree. It’s just not appropriate to push your ‘RIGHTS’ in other people’s CHILDRENS faces. Almost purposefully. THAT. Is shameful.

    And whoever is talking about Victoria’s Secret…well some of us don’t go to places like that, either. Yes, even where JUST the window is. My children are CHILDREN.

  • Anonymous 2 years ago

    He just kept harassing her, what in the world. Its no big deal the kids are not remotely interested in her feeding her baby but this man is like intense, even when she is clearly upset he won’t stop. I hope he got in trouble, I see a breastfeeding sit-in in his future.

  • Patty 2 years ago

    I was the third of seven siblings and grew up surrounded by breastfeeding mothers. I was not in any way traumatized by it. I saw it as natural and necessary to the babies’ survival. I think it is good for children to see that it is a normal thing. It will encourage them to breastfeed their own children

  • Anonymous 2 years ago

    my name is Carol Wadsworth and I know there will be no Breast feeding in public and to me she would of find a Private place and I agree not the play ground at school or in Parks

  • Robin 2 years ago

    This woman was clearly challenging anyone to react to breastfeeding. You are defiant and attention seeking. I think you need to go to the principal’s office.

  • Jacque 2 years ago

    I find it disgustingly offensive you want to feed your baby have at it in the appropriate places! If I saw her in the area I would have called her on it, we have choices and mine is to not see this choice?

  • Anonymous 2 years ago

    Please…modesty never hurt anyone. She should have moved!

  • Anonymous 2 years ago

    It’s complicated. I plan to breastfeed when my first baby is born in a few months, but I think it’s important to consider whether other parents would want their children to see a woman breastfeeding on the public school playground when they’re not there to decide whether to remove their child if they personally have different values. I plan to cover up with a shawl or something when I’m around other people’s children because I know there are also things other parents consider good or normal for their families that I won’t for my child. It’s a two way street of respect. The administration of this school, responsible for these children in their parents’ absence, did the best they could with the situation by offering her a place to feed her baby that didn’t potentially infringe on other parents’ values for their own kids and by attempting to clear the playground when she declined the private space. It’s unfortunate and inconvenient sometimes that we don’t all have the same values, but I personally feel she made a bigger spectacle than the vice principal did. I feel like this video crept into “social justice warrior” territory. And this is coming from somebody who supports breastfeeding and plans to do so myself. :-/

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