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Australian senator becomes first politician to breastfeed on Parliament floor

Queensland senator Larissa Waters made history when she nursed her 2-month-old daughter, Alia Joy, on Parliament's senate floor.
/ Source: TODAY

Australian Senator Larissa Waters returned to work after ten weeks of maternity leave on Tuesday with her 2-month-old daughter, Alia Joy, in tow.

A short time later, the pair made history.

When little Alia Joy got hungry, Waters, 40, breastfed her right there on the Parliament senate floor — becoming the first politician in Australia's history to do so.

Australian Senator Larissa Waters breastfeeds
Australian Senator Larissa Waters breastfeeds her baby at Parliament House in Canberra, Australia, on Tuesday. Reuters

The milestone is especially sweet since Waters, a Queensland senator and co-deputy leader of the Australian Greens party, helped last year to extend Parliament's breastfeeding rules, according to The Independent.

While working moms were already allowed to breastfed in senate chambers, Waters fought for mothers — and fathers — to be able to care for infants while meeting on the senate floor.

Just before she returned to work this week, Waters told The Courier Mail she fully intended to make use of the new rule with Alia Joy.

"If she’s hungry, that’s what you do, you feed your baby,” said the senator.

The change comes eight years after Greens member Sarah Hanson-Young had her 2-year-old daughter taken from her arms and removed from the senate floor.

On Tuesday, Waters followed up the historic feeding with a jubilant tweet — and a call for more parents to join Parliament.

"So proud that my daughter Alia is the first baby to be breastfed in the federal Parliament! We need more #women & parents in Parli," she wrote.

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