If Colorado expands the definition of “person” and “child” in its criminal code to include “unborn human beings,” the results would be especially devastating for Latina women and other women of color.
Texas’ penal code explicitly exempts pregnant individuals from being punished for harming their own fetuses. But that hasn’t stopped prosecutors from charging them with child endangerment for using drugs while pregnant.
The prosecution of Jennifer Whalen for purchasing her daughter abortion-inducing medication is reminiscent of the way that hospitals, Child Protective Services, and law enforcement have historically responded to drug use during pregnancy.
A letter sent by 48 reproductive justice, drug policy reform, women’s rights, and civil liberties organizations called on Attorney General Eric Holder and the Department of Justice to renounce a policy of enhancing a criminal sentence for crimes committed while pregnant.
“The fetus basically gets two lawyers to try and stop the minor from getting an abortion in a way that no other state’s law comes close to doing,” said Andrew Beck, one of the ACLU attorneys challenging the Alabama law on behalf of a Montgomery abortion clinic, arguing it is unconstitutional.
A judge has dropped charges brought against a pregnant Montana woman who was arrested after failing a drug test in late August.
A Montana woman who is 12 weeks pregnant is being charged with criminal endangerment of a child after failing a drug test.
The Alaska legislature recently approved a project that will place free pregnancy tests in bar bathrooms as part of a larger campaign to raise awareness about fetal alcohol syndrome. But what is fetal alcohol syndrome, and could this effort possibly help address it?
Jessica De Samito, who is six months pregnant and needs methadone maintenance therapy to maintain her pregnancy, will continue treatment at home.
The law specifically criminalizes “the illegal use of a narcotic drug while pregnant, if [a woman's] child is born addicted to or harmed by the narcotic drug.” But Mallory Loyola was arrested Tuesday for exposing her child to amphetamine, which is not a narcotic.