- A new mother has criticised Delta Air Lines for the way she was treated on a flight from Nice to New York.
- Alix Anfang needed to pump milk for her 4-month-old baby, but was unable to use the bathrooms because the power outlets weren’t working.
- She wanted to swap seats with her in-laws, who were sitting in first class, for a few minutes in order to pump with some privacy, but she wasn’t allowed.
- Airline staff also wouldn’t let her sit at the back of the plane to do so.
- She told INSIDER she was left with nowhere to pump milk.
- Delta has apologised for any “inconvenience or discomfort” Anfang felt.
- Visit INSIDER’s homepage for more stories.
A new mother has criticised Delta Air Lines after she was prevented from switching seats with her in-laws, who were sitting in first class, in order to pump breast milk with more privacy.
Alix Anfang, who works in communications for Uber in New York, was travelling from Nice to New York City’s JFK airport with her 4-month-old baby and husband.
She initially attempted to pump milk in the bathroom, but found the power outlets weren’t working.
The mother then decided she would try switching seats with her in-laws, who were travelling in first class, in order to have more privacy. But the flight attendants wouldn’t let her, leaving Anfang with no other option than to pump at her seat “in front of strangers.”
Hey @delta the outlets in the bathroom not working so can’t pump except at my seat in front of strangers. Tried alternative but you won’t let me sit in my in laws‘ first class seat to do it privately
— Alix Anfang (@alixanfang) May 29, 2019
Anfang told INSIDER that at this point she panicked because her baby won’t nurse.
She added that she respects the rule which prevents people from swapping seats between classes, but she thought she would be allowed to switch for just five minutes.
The mother also asked to sit at the back of the plane for five minutes, but said she wasn’t allowed.
This left Anfang unable to pump milk.
Fortunately, she had some extra formula and some milk leftover from the last time she’d pumped, which was just before the flight.
Anfang tweeted about her experience and was met with a wave of support.
“Bathrooms are hardly sanitary enough for new mothers to breast pump anyhow,” wrote one person. “How’s about always offering a first class seat for the new mums during pump time?”
Hey, @Delta , bathrooms are hardly sanitary enough for new mothers to breast pump anyhow. How's about always offering a first class seat for the new moms during pump time?
— Dr. Lee in Iowa #TeamPelosi (@Lee_in_Iowa) May 29, 2019
“Does @Delta lack that much humanity?” asked another.
— Coco ???? (@cenderton23) May 29, 2019
One mother even said hearing about Anfang’s experience made her nervous to take a long-haul flight with her baby.
ugh this does not make me feel good! I will be flying with a newborn during a 8 hr flight and I do not want to be treated this way.
— Mattie. (@MaitreyeeMAYHEM) June 4, 2019
Delta’s social media team got in touch to speak to Anfang about what had happened.
Hi Alix, I do apologize regarding the outlets on working in the bathrooms. Can you please DM your flight information? I would be delighted to forward this on to maintenance. Regrettably, you would not be able to move to the first class cabin to pump. TMC
— Delta (@Delta) May 29, 2019
In a statement sent to INSIDER, a Delta spokesperson said: “We’re sorry for any inconvenience or discomfort our customer felt during her experience.
“Delta’s flight attendants aboard flight 413 from Nice to JFK worked directly with her to find a private alternative to enable this customer to pump during the flight.
“Unfortunately, the power outlets on board this aircraft and in general are not equipped to operate a breast pump or other similar medical devices.”
However, Anfang told INSIDER the statement wasn’t entirely true, that the airline staff did not find her a place to pump, and she never pumped on the flight.
The Delta spokesperson added that customers are encouraged to bring battery-operated or manual devices where needed.
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