October 12, 2005

Sometimes we're amazed by what the mainstream press doesn't consider significant.

For example, the fact that 20 US states allow the shackling of women prisoners during labor and delivery. And the fact that California just enacted a law to forbid this practice.

A.B. 478 makes it illegal to deny inmates prenatal and postpartum care, including access to vitamins and a basic dental cleaning, and bans the shackling of women during labor, delivery, and recovery. These inmates typically give birth in a locked hospital ward with armed guards-measures that are more than adequate to protect public safety or to prevent escape.

"The United Nations has established minimum rules for treatment of prisoners and California has not been following them," stated [Assemblymember Sally Lieber, the law's author].... "It is inconceivable in this day and age, that human beings would be shackled while giving birth."

The full text of AB 478 is here.

Via Medical News Today.

Posted by Magpie at October 12, 2005 01:05 AM | Women | Technorati links |

Talk about barbarism! Where does anyone think a women in childbirth is going? You're lucky if you can sit up.

Posted by: Larraine at October 12, 2005 10:10 AM

It used to be common practice to tie *everyone* down during labor and delivery. Telling the nurse to hold a kleenex while you blow was about the only way out of bondage.

Posted by: Scorpio at October 12, 2005 03:41 PM

My God...I had no idea such barbaric practices occurred to pregnant prisoners. How far do they think a woman in labor can get? And why would she leave her baby?

What is wrong with this country, that such things are accepted in 20 states?

Posted by: Deborah White at October 12, 2005 08:31 PM