Working Mother 'Mooed' At For Expressing Breast Milk For Her Baby

08/12/2014 12:15 | Updated 20 May 2015

Mother holding milk bottle

A mother-of-two was 'mooed' at and taunted with a picture of a cow while expressing breast milk at work.

Monica Van De Pitte won undisclosed damages for discrimination and harassment for the way she was treated by Velocitel, a wireless network company in Oregon, US.

She said she found a picture of a cow taped to the door of the supply room that she and other mothers were told to use for pumping while at work.

The harassment was so hurtful that she 'struggled to compose herself enough to express any milk once inside the room'.

When she joined the company in 2012, Monica had explained to bosses that she was still nursing her one-year-old son, and would need a private space where she could pump during the work day.

But People magazine reported that on her first day at work, another nursing mother warned her to keep her breast pump hidden because other employees thought it was 'gross.'

Monica also claimed that some of her colleagues openly bragged about their sex lives. Her complaint stated that one colleague was nicknamed 'The Walking HR Violation' because of his harassing conduct.

He was accused of regularly demeaning women, including Monica, by pretending to 'honk' their breasts.

When Monica asked him to stop his demeaning behaviour - he just 'snickered' at her concerns.

After another month, Monica said she complained to bosses about the man's behaviour and was told that she needed to 'privately reflect on why sexual conversations made her uncomfortable'.

Monica quit her job at Velocitel in 2013 and filed a formal complaint.

A settlement was recently reached, but the amount of compensation wasn't revealed.