Across all social media channels this week were reports of the birth of music icon Beyonce Knowles’ first child with rap star husband Jay-Z. What made headlines, however, wasn’t the baby’s name or birth weight, but rather the controversy caused by the couple’s high profile security detail, executive hospital suite rental, and over-the-top attention and accommodations. According to early reports, other parents in the hospital were delayed access to and from the NICU because of the couple’s security personnel, though a subsequent investigation dismissed the claims.
While the intention behind increased security measures for a high profile celebrity is understandable, the resulting impact to other parents and families at the hospital is not. The birth of each child is a once-in-a-lifetime, special, exciting, and sometimes stressful and anxious, time for any mom — regardless of celebrity status. All of the families at Lenox Hill Hospital should have been entitled to the same respect and safe-keeping by hospital staff, whether or not they paid extra for a lavish suite and privacy. And while it appears, in the case of Beyonce, that several measures were taken to safeguard the superstar couple’s privacy, measures were not in place to protect the rights and sanctity of other guests. In glorifying the birth experience of one mother, others’ were diminished.
Chime in! How did you react to the celebrity birth news this week? What can be done to provide the extra security that some may need, while maintaining the respect that all of us deserve?