Starbucks diaper change ends with call to police

7:48 AM, May 14, 2013   |    comments
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DENVER (KUSA) - It's a dilemma many parents face. Your baby needs a diaper change, but there's no changing table in the restroom.

One mom decided to change her child's diaper out in the open at a Denver Starbucks and what happened next ended with a call to police.

On a coffee run Friday night, Ruth Burgos ran her one-year-old son Thiago to the restroom.

"As a mother, you have to do what you have to do. Wherever you have to do it," Burgos said.

Burgos noticed there was no changing table at the Denver Starbucks on the 7900 block of East 49th Avenue so she changed her son's diaper in the seating area.

"I just kind of wiped him off, cleaned him off as quickly as I could," Burgos said.

Alex Burgos says a Starbucks employee tossed his wife a rag and spoke to her in a "demeaning" tone.

"He said make sure to wipe the seat when you're done," he said. "They started talking amongst themselves and laughing about it."

Burgos says his blood started boiling, hotter than the venti coffee with extra sugar he decided to pour on the floor.

"And I said make sure you clean that," Burgos said.

He says they exchanged strong words and hand gestures.

The store called Denver police to report a "disturbance" and an officer responded around 10 p.m. but nobody was arrested.

Starbucks spokesperson Jaime Riley says the company is "concerned," has "apologized to the Burgos family," and wants all customers treated with "dignity and respect."

We asked Riley if Starbucks is considering installing changing tables and she said she didn't know the answer to that but would look into it.

"It's really frustrating as a parent or as a child care provider," said Jami Dennis, president of Glendale-based ABC Nannies.

Dennis says a lot of family friendly businesses don't have changing tables, but doing a diaper change out in the open should only be a parent's last resort.

"To avoid situations where you make other people uncomfortable, I would try to do it in private," Dennis said.

Burgos says this never would have happened if Starbucks would've had a changing table in the restroom.

"I hope that other families don't get treated the way we did," she said.

What do you think? Is it appropriate to change your child in public, or should businesses be more accommodating to families?

Join the conversation now on our KSDK Facebook page.

(KUSA-TV © 2013 Multimedia Holdings Corporation)

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