Breastfeeding woman dragged from refugee sit-in protest

The woman said of the incident: 'There are far worse things going on in detention camps'

Olivia Blair
Thursday 05 November 2015 14:05
Breastfeeding Mum Removed From A Refugee Protest In Melbourne

A woman was dragged from a refugee sit-in protest by police while breastfeeding her son.

Video footage shows the woman, known as Jill, being removed from the Immigration Department offices in Melbourne after participating in the sit-in.

The woman was part of the group Families, Friends and Feminists Against Detention (FFFAD) who held a ‘Pram Jam’ at the offices to support a Somalian refugee who was allegedly raped on the island of Nauru, where many asylum seekers are held.

The group state on their Facebook page they want the woman “to be give permanent resettlement options in Australia with her family”.

Jill told Buzzfeed: “I took my 22 month old son Manny to a protest… I was breastfeeding him when the police came in to remove us, and I continued while they carried me out.”

She reportedly said of the incident: “There are far worse things going on in detention camps.”

“It raises the question, why are my son’s feelings so important, while the well-being of children in detention is a matter of indifference?” she said.

The protest was in support of a refugee woman who was allegedly raped while being held on the Pacific island of Nauru.

According to the BBC, the Australian government said she could come to the country to terminate the pregnancy, however later left without doing so.

There are conflicting reports as to whether this was disallowed by the government, they state that the refugee changed her mind — which she denies.

According to Buzzfeed, she is now in an Australian hospital.

A spokesperson for Victoria police told The Independent: "The woman’s actions were inappropriate and attending police were more than reasonable in their requests, providing the woman ample time and opportunity to leave before they had to escort her away."