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Delta passenger caught on video complaining about baby has been suspended from her job 

The woman accused of screaming at a mother and her baby on a Delta flight last week has now been punished at work.

>> Watch the video here

According to Fox News, Susan Peirez, who claimed to work for New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo during the incident, has been suspended from her job with the New York state government.

>> DOT reveals which airlines ranked highest for complaints in 2017

“State employees are and must be held to the highest standard both professionally and personally,” said Ronni Reich, a spokesperson for the New York State Council of the Arts, where Peirez works. “We were notified of this situation and have commenced an investigation. This employee has been removed from the office and placed on leave until further notice and until the inquiry is resolved.”

>> On Rare.us: Woman kicked off Delta flight for complaining about baby

Mother Marissa Rundell captured the incident on camera, and the video quickly made its rounds on the internet. The footage shows an annoyed Peirez complaining about having to sit next to a “crying baby” on the plane even though it doesn’t appear the child was crying at the time. When a flight attendant informed her that she couldn’t change seats, she threatened to have the employee fired and was soon removed from the flight. 

>> WATCH: United Airlines plane loses engine cover on way to Honolulu, makes emergency landing

Delta responded in a statement, saying Peirez’s actions and behavior failed to meet the airline’s standards for passengers:

>> Read more trending news 

"We ask that customers embrace civility and respect one another when flying Delta," the statement said. "This customer’s behavior toward a fellow customer on a flight from New York to Syracuse was not in keeping with those standards. We appreciate our Endeavor Air flight attendant’s commitment to Delta’s core values and apologize to the other customers on board Flight 4017 who experienced the disturbance."

School under fire for rule telling students they can't say 'no' when asked to dance

A Utah school is facing backlash after reportedly telling sixth-grade students that they must accept requests to dance at the upcoming Valentine’s Day dance.

>> Watch the news report here

According to KSTU, Natalie Richard was convinced her daughter had misunderstood Kanesville Elementary School’s rule when she came home saying that she could not refuse if a boy asked her to dance. However, after speaking with her daughter’s teacher, Richard realized the sixth-grade girls had in fact been told they couldn’t say “no.”

>> Valentine's Day 2018: 6 ways to eat for free or cheap

“The teacher said she can’t. She has to say yes. She has to accept, and I said, ‘Excuse me?’” Richard recalled of hearing the news, after which she took the issue up with the principal. “He basically just said they’ve had this dance set up this way for a long time, and they’ve never had any concern before.”

>> On Rare.us: School blocks single mom from attending father-daughter dance

A spokesperson for Weber School District confirmed the rule’s existence but explained that it’s intended to teach the students to be inclusive.

“Please be respectful, be polite. We want to promote kindness, and so we want you to say yes when someone asks you to dance,” Lane Findlay said, adding that the students will fill out cards before the voluntary dance with the names of five people they want to dance with and can speak up if they feel uncomfortable with anyone who has requested to dance with them. “If there is an issue, if there’s students that are uncomfortable or have a problem with another student, I mean, that’s certainly something that can be addressed with that student and parents.”

>> Read more trending news 

Richard, however, believes rejection is a learning experience and a part of life. She said there are other ways to educate the children on being tolerant and accepting that don’t include forcing girls into unwanted dances with boys.

“[The rule] sends a bad message to girls that girls have to say ‘yes’; [it] sends a bad message to boys that girls can’t say ‘no,'” she said. “Psychologically, my daughter keeps coming to me and saying, ‘I can’t say “no” to a boy.’ That’s the message kids are getting.”

Read more here.

Ginger Zee of 'Good Morning America' welcomes baby boy

Congratulations are in order for “Good Morning America’s” Ginger Zee, who just welcomed her second child – a baby boy – with husband Ben Aaron.

>> On Rare.us: Omarosa goes to war with Robin Roberts after being called out on live TV

The meteorologist gave fans a first look at her bundle of joy Saturday when she shared a photo of her newborn’s feet.

“8lbs 7oz, 21.5,'” she captioned the post, adding three blue heart emojis.

>> See the post here

>> On Rare.us: Ginger Zee revealed the startling amount of weight she lost during 'Dancing with the Stars'

On Friday evening, just one day after appearing at the Red Dress / Go Red For Women Fashion Show in New York City, Zee announced the news on Twitter with a photo of her oldest son Adrian, writing, “Scrubbed in, delivered a healthy baby boy and got a cookie to celebrate. It’s been a good day.”

>> See the post here

Zee announced her pregnancy in August while she was delivering the national weather forecast.

>> Read more trending news 

“This is the breaking news part. There’s a lesser-known visual phenomenon that’s about to happen on our maps only for the next five months,” she teased viewers at the time while the southwest and southeast portions of the country were highlighted on the screen behind her. “These areas are going to have a shadow from my belly because I’m pregnant.”

On Thursday, her “GMA” costars threw her an on-air baby shower to celebrate and to shower the happy mom with lots of love.

Cafe manager tells breastfeeding mom to cover up

An Apopka restaurant is facing social media backlash Wednesday after one of its managers told a mother who was breastfeeding her baby to cover up.

Manager Bridget Tarassenko told WFTV investigative reporter Karla Ray she didn’t know that a state law allows women to breastfeed almost anywhere.

>>> Read the Florida statute here <<< 

Mother Amber Wilkie told Eyewitness News that in late January, she ordered enough food for her toddler and middle school-age child, but her 8-month-old, Savannah, needed to eat too.

>> Read more trending news 

"I was getting ready to feed her because she was hungry. It had been a couple of hours," Wilkie said. 

Wilkie said she started breastfeeding Savannah uncovered in the restaurant, which she said she's always done.

"It's purely natural to breastfeed a baby," Wilkie said. 

>>> Read other 9 Investigates stories <<<

Natural or not, Tarassenko told WFTV that she had never seen someone openly breastfeeding in her restaurant before. 

“I didn’t know how to react to it. I wanted to protect her privacy because I had other customers in there as well. I asked her to cover up, and the next day I was being harassed on social media,” Tarassenko said.

Many of the posts 9 Investigates found online pointed out the Florida law, which states, "A mother may breastfeed her baby in any location, public or private, where the mother is otherwise authorized to be." 

"You can breastfeed your baby anytime, anywhere you need to, covered or uncovered; that is state law," Wilkie said.

Meet Lucas, first Gerber Baby with Down syndrome

The world has a new Gerber Baby. 

Meet Lucas, the 1-year-old baby from Dalton, Georgia, who is now the face of Gerber, USAToday reported. He’s also the first company “spokesbaby” with Down syndrome, the “Today” show reported

>> Read more trending news 

Lucas’ mom Courtney Warren told “Today” that she entered her son’s photo on a whim, using Gerber’s hashtag on Instagram. The family found out that Lucas had beaten 140,000 other kids to win the title of 2018 Gerber Baby, “Today” reported.

Gerber’s CEO and president, Bill Partyka, said, “Every year, we choose the baby who best exemplifies Gerber’s longstanding heritage of recognizing that every baby is a Gerber baby. This year, Lucas is the perfect fit.”

Lucas’ mom hopes that people see more than his disability.

“He may have Down syndrome, but he’s always Lucas first,” Warren told “Today.” “He’s got an awesome personality and he goes through the milestones of every child ... We’re hoping when he grows up and looks back on this, he’ll be proud of himself and not ashamed of his disability.”

Being named 2018 Gerber Baby isn’t the only honor bestowed on Lucas. He also will receive $50,000 that his parents hope to use for his education, Time magazine reported.

Hand-me-down toys could pose serious health risks for kids, study says

Do you accept second-hand toys? Beware, because they could pose serious health risks for children, according to a new report. 

Researchers from the University of Plymouth recently conducted an experiment, published in Environmental Science and Technology, to determine the dangers of passed-down toys. 

>> Toys 'R' Us to close up to 182 stores nationwide; see the full list

To do so, they used X-ray fluorescence technology to examine 200 plastic toys, such as cars, trains, figures and puzzles, which were found in nurseries, thrift shops and homes across England. They were inspecting the items for nine hazardous elements, including antimony, barium, bromine, cadmium, chromium, lead and selenium.

After analyzing the results, they found that 20 toys had traces of all nine elements, which can be chronically toxic if children are exposed to them at low levels. If the kids put the products in their mouths, they can be introduced to the toxins faster.

>> Consumer safety group W.A.T.C.H. unveils 'most dangerous' toys list

"Consumers should be made more aware of the potential risks associated with small, mouthable and brightly coloured old plastic toys or components,” coauthor Andrew Turner told BBC. "Without that, the attractive cost, convenience and recyclability of previously used toys has the potential to create a legacy of chemical contamination for younger children."

Furthermore, a few of the toys didn’t comply with standards set by the European Council's Toy Safety Directive. In fact, red, yellow or black plastics were the worst, because they had too much too much bromine, cadmium or lead.

>> Read more trending news 

While scientists said second-hand toys “are an attractive option,” parents should use with caution. They also believe risky toys should be taken off the market altogether. 

Toddler puts dad’s efforts to keep her in room to shame

Two gates are no match for a determined girl who must get out of her room.

Wesley Quilty thought he beat his daughter at her own game by installing two baby gates to block her from leaving her room, The Sun reported

>> Read more trending news 

But she had something to prove when she threw something and had to go get it.

Quilty set up a camera to capture what could happen and now is going viral with his climbing kid as she thwarts his security plan.

The little girl’s mother tells Quilty that “This is all your fault,” as she follows after their child, The Daily Mail reported.

Toys 'R' Us to close up to 182 stores nationwide; see the full list

Iconic children's retailer Toys 'R' Us plans to close as many as 182 stores nationwide, the chain said in court documents Tuesday.

>> See the full list of stores set to close

The New Jersey-based company, which filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in September, has about 880 U.S. stores and 1,600 worldwide, CNN Money reported.

>> Read the court documents here

"The reinvention of our brands requires that we make tough decisions about our priorities and focus," Dave Brandon, Toys 'R' Us chairman and CEO, said in a letter posted on the company's website. "To that end and following a top-to-bottom assessment of our business, we have decided to close a number of our U.S. stores. We also intend to convert a number of locations into co-branded Toys 'R' Us and Babies 'R' Us stores. The actions we are taking are necessary to give us the best chance to emerge from our bankruptcy proceedings as a more viable and competitive company that will provide the level of service and experience you should expect from a market leader."

>> Toys ‘R’ Us files for bankruptcy: 3 things to know

>> Read more trending news 

If approved, "we estimate store closing sales to begin in early February, with the majority of locations closing in mid-April 2018," Brandon wrote.

>> Read the full memo here

>> Is your store closing? Click here or scroll down to find out

'Tide Pod Challenge': Georgia teen among those sickened in dangerous trend

Don’t do the Tide Pod Challenge. Seriously.

>> Watch the news report here

That’s the message poison control officials are urging people after a bizarre trend spread like wildfire online.

The challenge involves people popping the small laundry detergent packs in their mouths and posting videos online of themselves chewing and gagging on the oozing product.

Dozens of people have been taken to the hospital after doing the challenge. 

>> Doctors warn parents about dangerous 'Tide Pod Challenge'

Dr. Gaylord Lopez, the director of Georgia's Poison Control Center, confirmed to WSB-TV that the center has handled one case involving a teen.

“This year, we had a call about a 13-year-old. In fact, it was the mother who called us because the kid was getting sick and vomiting,” Lopez said.

While there's only been one confirmed “Tide Pod Challenge” case in Georgia, Lopez said this is a good reminder about the dangers of detergent pods in general.

There are still hundreds of children under the age of 5 getting sick from them.

“When you’ve got a young child picking up a packet, like I have in my hand, thinking it might be candy or food, you could see why kids are attracted to them,” Lopez said.

>> Read more trending news 

Lopez also wants parents to be aware of the latest social media craze.

“Parents need to know that if their young teens are getting into them, they can easily have problems ranging from just mild upset of the stomach to this stuff getting into their lungs and causing far more problems,” Lopez said.

Last week, YouTube and Facebook announced they are removing “Tide Pod Challenge” videos from their sites.

Experts: Parents feed babies solid food too soon

Are Americans feeding their babies solid foods too early?

One group of child-feeding advocates say yes and that the move to feed babies solids early can follow them for the rest of their lives.

>> Read more trending news 

The group, called thousanddays.org, examined nutrition for babies in America.

Thousand days refers to pregnancy through the first two years after birth.

Its research found that nearly 40 percent of parents are introducing solids too early and that only 22 percent of babies are exclusively breastfed for six months.

Thousanddays.org said that more than half of moms say they are getting mixed messages on what to feed their babies.

So what are parents feeding their children and when?

Chloe Barrera with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevents said that she oversaw a study that took a look at what 1,482 babies from the age of 6 to 36 months ate. Parents told researchers when they first ate food that wasn’t formula or breast milk. Other foods included juice, cow’s milk, baby food or other solids. About two-thirds of families were not following official recommendations. Some parents introduced foods too early, or before 4 months (16.3 percent) , many (38.3 percent) gave food to their babies between 4 and 5 months, while some held off solid foods until 7 or more months (12.9 percent), Huffington Post reported.

Barrera’s study was published in the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.

But study authors say the numbers may be worse than reported since research depended upon self-reporting and that parents who know the recommendations may have under-reported the ages of their children and when they fed them solid foods, Huffington Post reported.

Experts say babies should be either breast fed or fed for their first 6 months because those foods have the nutrients babies need for development. 

The U.S. Department of Agriculture and the Department of Health and Human Services are both working on federal guidelines for children under 2 years old. The guidelines are expected to be released in 2020, Huffington Post reported.

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