Mum 'shocked' to be given car park fine while breastfeeding child
- Credit: Treisha Phillips
An Ipswich mum has said she is "shocked" after being fined for overstaying in a car park while she breastfed her child.
Treisha Phillips, known as Katie, found a space at the National Car Park (NCP) site in Crown Street, Ipswich, near M&S, and gave her son a quick feed on May 10 "as it was very hot that day".
She then bought a car parking ticket, went into the town centre and returned a few minutes before her ticket was due to run out.
"I went to go to start the car, but my son was upset and wanted a feed," Ms Phillips said.
"Usually, he would have it a little later but, due to hot weather, he was eating and drinking more frequently and earlier than usual.
"As his mother, I have the right to feed him, so I did - and he was satisfied after 15 minutes, so I popped him back in his seat and off we went.
"I then receive a letter from NCP on June 1 stating that I had gone over the time."
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She appealed the fine, but it was rejected by NCP.
A spokeswoman for the firm said: "NCP has reviewed the case again and can see that the customer overstayed their parking period by over half an hour and so a PCN was issued correctly.
"Customers are always able to add on extra time if they realise they need to stay for longer and this will avoid any PCNs being issued."
Ms Phillips added: "I'm just shocked that they are not understanding my appeal.
"My baby feeds on demand. I can't deny him a feed, it's disgusting - I can't drive off with a baby on me.
"I haven't paid the fine as I can't afford to. I'm on maternity leave but at the lower end of pay for my maternity now, which is around the £650 mark a month.
"I have my own bills to pay, which is 85% of my money gone and then food shopping.
"I also have to get bits for my baby boy as well as my older son, so I'm virtually left with nothing spare."
The government is planning to introduce a cap on parking fine charges and introduce 10-minute grace periods before firms can issue a late fine.