FBD obtains decision establishing a constitutional right to breastfeed

Judge David Thomson of the First Judicial District Court in Santa Fe has issued a preliminary injunction barring the New Mexico Department of Corrections from prohibiting an inmate from breast feeding her child during normal visitation hours.

The lawsuit, Hidalgo v. New Mexico Department of Corrections, stemmed from the Department of Correction’s issuance of a lactation pilot program which prohibited inmates from live breastfeeding or using a mechanical breast pump to maintain their milk supply following the birth of a child. Monique Hidalgo, an inmate at the Western New Mexico Correctional Facility, sued in June 2017, asserting that the policy violated the Equal Rights Amendment to the New Mexico Constitution because it discriminated against her based on a trait unique to women.

David H. Urias and Nicholas T. Hart of Freedman Boyd Hollander Goldberg Urias & Ward P.A. represent Hidalgo, pro bono, in the litigation.

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Freedman Boyd Hollander Goldberg Urias & Ward P.A. lawyers were successful in obtaining Presidential clemency for their client, Chelsea Manning, which reduced her sentence from 35 years to 7 years and resulted in her release and continue to represent Ms. Manning in the underlying appeal of her conviction in the military courts.