Breastfeeding at: West End Synagogue, Manhattan, NY

West End Synagogue in Manhattan, New York, USA

Breastfeeding in the Sanctuary:

It is permitted.  “Because I’ve nursed in the middle of services and no one has looked twice at me… I can’t ever imagine it even coming up as an issue. For [the rabbi] or the congregation for that matter.”  It is comfortable to do.

Nursing Locations:

There is a no separate space for breastfeeding privately.

A Note About Synagogue Layout:

This congregation is located in a former NYC library, so there is an upstairs and a lobby, but really only those two major spaces. Nursing is welcome in both places, during services in the sanctuary portion and at other holiday events downstairs in the former basement / congregation space. They also rent out a church for high holidays and nursing is fine there too, and comfortable even with the larger holiday crowds.  

Other Information:

The majority of this congregation is 60 and over.  However, all of the older generation enjoys the babies especially and is very supportive of all types of parenting.

There is no information made public about breastfeeding policy.

General  Child Friendliness:

There are changing tables in a gender-neutral bathroom. There is space for stroller parking in the lobby space There is space for children’s supplies as well in the coat room.  Children are  welcome in the main service, and there are monthly “intergenerational” Friday night services and musical Saturday morning services that are aimed a bit more at kids.  However, kids are welcome at all services, although true screaming should be removed from the sanctuary.

Summary:

This synagogue received a general rating of:

    • Great, could barely be better- 1

out of 7, where 1 was the best rating and 7 was the worst.

Contact information

Rabbi Marc Margolius at rabbi@westendsynagogue.org

Synagogue website: http://westendsynagogue.org/

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