Pregnant woman told to leave bar

You might think this is another one of those stories about pregnant women (that is, competent adults) having what they put in their bodies regulated by others. But it’s not that. She wasn’t even drinking alcohol.

Michelle Lee was enjoying a glass of water and a chat with a friend at a Chicago-area bar on Friday night when a bouncer asked to speak with her privately.

The bouncer immediately questioned Lee as to whether she was pregnant. Upon confirming that she was indeed eight months pregnant, the bouncer ordered her to leave the bar immediately, claiming that should a fight break out in the bar and something happen to her, the bar could be held responsible and they were unwilling to take that risk.

For more, go here.

6 thoughts on “Pregnant woman told to leave bar

  1. Q: if it is illegal to bar a pregnant person from a bar – as the original post claims – , does that mean it is it also illegal to bar a pregnant person from flying? For there, I think, airlines have a general policy of banning after the 35th week?

    just curious…..

  2. Wahine, I think those restrictions are probably justified on grounds of medical risks (if the woman goes into labour mid-flight it could be pretty problematic; also there may be problems with pressurisation/altitude (??)).

    And a general reminder to all: don’t feed the trolls.

  3. I find these questions very interesting. From the linked article:

    Was the bouncer simply overzealous in his concern for Lee’s safety and the liability of his establishment? Or did he have personal biases colouring his judgment? Did he believe a pregnant woman should be at home, safe from all potential harm, putting the welfare of her child above all for she is a sacred vessel? Did he secretly believe she was acting shamefully, being out at a bar at 8 months pregnant? Or was he truly looking out for her welfare and was just misguided in his approach?

    I think these are good questions. But they do make some problematic assumptions. For example, assuming that being at home is “safe from all potential harm” might not reflect the realities for some pregnant women. For some women home is a site of abuse rather than safety, and abuse tends to increase during pregnancy.

    Further, the order of the questions seems to imply that the final option “looking out for her welfare” is the acceptable option. I agree that it is acceptable to look out for the welfare of others, but the article does not make it seem like there was immediate threat. If the bar is particularly violent and fights are common on Friday nights, then looking out for her welfare would require informing her of this fact. But I cannot see how it could require telling her to leave. As mentioned above, her home might be less safe than even a violent bar. Further, enjoying social time with friends is part of one’s welfare, and can save one’s emotional state when one has been cooped up for too long.

  4. I guess I can understand the point of view of protecting her from harm, the same way say a rollercoaster operator would. She certainly isn’t obligated to leave. What kind of bar is this that there was such a pertinent risk of a brawl? And if there was an idea that a fight would break out, why not protect everyone’s safety?

Comments are closed.