A pregnant woman in Marysville, Washington, says she was denied service at a restaurant because she was wearing a crop top.
"I was just denied service at the Buzz Inn on State Avenue in Marysville for my outfit," wrote Charisha Gobin on Facebook. "I'm violating the health code."
Gobin, who is seven months pregnant with twins, said the incident occurred on Sept. 3, reports CBS News.
Accompanied by her family, Gobin was wearing a black crop top and a long skirt.
"The waitress/bartender stopped us and said, 'I'm sorry, you can't be here in that shirt,'" she explained.
She was informed that her attire did not conform to the restaurant's "no shoes, no shirt, no service," as required by the city's health code regulations.
Anyone wearing a crop top would have been asked to cover up, she was told.
But Gobin believes she was being body-shamed because of her pregnancy.
"Just because my belly was bigger and sticking out. But had it been anyone else, I don't think there would've been any problem whatsoever," she said.
Gobin and family left the steak restaurant soon after they had arrived.
"I was livid. There was no way I was going to stay there," she said, noting that she ended up going to another restaurant, where her attire was accepted. "It's pretty ridiculous I was shamed in the first place and had to drive across town to eat."
In an interview with KIRO, the server reiterated the "no shirt, no shoes, no service" explanation, saying the top Gobin was wearing didn't cover enough to count as a shirt, reports CBS News.
"I was wearing a shirt, it had sleeves," insisted Gobin. "I didn't even have cleavage showing."
Her Facebook post has generated hundreds of shares, most of which Gobin says are positive.
"I was very surprised by the response," she said. "I think that says everybody pretty much agrees -- I wasn't out of bounds or out of line in any way."
One employee of a popular restaurant chain agreed, as quoted by Us magazine. "I work at Applebee's and it's extremely corporate and we would never deny service to a pregnant woman only showing stomach. Boo."
In a Twitter statement, Buzz Inn issued an apology for the incident.
We sincerely apologize for the misunderstanding and will cover with all staff as to how to not overly enforce a rule that is intended to make all guests feel comfortable. Our apologies for the misunderstanding. The server in question has been with our company and a great employee for almost 20 years and was trying to use her best judgment and by no means was trying to be demeaning to the guest again our sincere apology for misunderstanding.
Actress Demi Moore is widely credited with helping to erase the traditional taboo associated with public pregnancy, observes Time magazine.
Moore was seven months pregnant she appeared nude on the cover of Vanity Fair magazine in 1991, in a portrait by famed photographer Annie Leibovitz.
The photo was the first mass media picture to sexualize pregnancy, and it proved to have a profound cultural impact, making it socially acceptable for women to wear clothing that flaunts their pregnant bodies.
As Gobin said, "Our bodies aren't just toys, they're for a purpose and I think it's a beautiful purpose."