Updated 

Honolulu shelter will allow mom to nurse openly


HONOLULU — A Honolulu homeless shelter won’t take action against a mother who is refusing to cover up while breastfeeding or use a private room.

Karen Penley wants to nurse her 9-month-old son Nakana out in the open at the Institute for Human Services shelter, where she’s been living for three weeks.

Executive Director Connie Mitchell said Tuesday that even though officials want her to nurse in private because of complaints from residents, they won’t interfere with her breastfeeding or ask her to leave.

Penley contacted a Honolulu television station because she feels the shelter is violating her right to breastfeed by asking her to cover herself.

According to the National Council of State Legislatures, Hawaii is among the states that have laws allowing breastfeeding in any public or private location.