County Board Adopts Measure to Limit the Shackling of Pregnant Women
"The practice of restraining pregnant women is demeaning and unnecessary and best efforts must be made to avoid this practice at all costs."
MILWAUKEE – The Milwaukee County Board of Supervisors adopted a measure opposing the practice of shackling pregnant and postpartum women within Milwaukee County correctional facilities today.
Supervisor Sequanna Taylor introduced the proposal.
“The current method of shackling of pregnant women in Milwaukee County correctional institutions is not only unnecessary in most cases, it’s also cruel and inhumane,” said Supervisor Taylor.
“All women held in our jail, the House of Corrections, and the Juvenile Justice Center must be treated with dignity, and we should do everything possible to ensure that they have a safe delivery and birth a healthy baby.”
Taylor’s resolution was co-sponsored by County Board Chairman Theodore Lipscomb, Sr., and Supervisors Marina Dimitrijevic, Willie Johnson, Jr., Michael Mayo Sr., and Sheldon Wasserman, M.D., and Chair of the Wisconsin section of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists.
“The practice of restraining pregnant women is demeaning and unnecessary and best efforts must be made to avoid this practice at all costs.
“Having practiced obstetrics and gynecology for twenty-five years, it’s my opinion that the practice of shackling pregnant inmates is dangerous, poses threats to the health of the woman and the baby and these women are often of little threat to correctional officers or medical staff while imprisoned,” said Supervisor Wasserman.
Several elected officials also support the measure, include Senators Lena Taylor, Chris Larson, and LaTonya Johnson, Representative David Crowley, and Milwaukee Alders Cavalier Johnson and Chantia Lewis.
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The goal of the initiative is to keep youth out of the troubled Lincoln Hills and Copper Lake facilities.
A measure opposing the practice of shackling pregnant and postpartum women within Milwaukee County correctional facilities will come before the Judiciary, Safety, and General Services committee
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