Ending the barbaric practice of shackling incarcerated pregnant women
Watch the Correctional Association’s video about the barbaric – and illegal – shackling of incarcerated women during childbirth. In 2009 New York enacted a statute restricting the use of shackles on women during childbirth. The law bans outright the use of restraints on women throughout labor, delivery and recovery “after giving birth,” which is meant to cover at least the duration of a woman’s stay at the hospital. The law also largely bans the use of shackles on women not in labor who are going to the hospital for “the purpose of giving birth” (i.e., if they are going to be induced or to have a scheduled C-section) and on women being taken from the hospital back to the prison. Based on surveys and interviews with 27 women who gave birth after the 2009 Anti-Shackling Law went into effect, the Correctional Association concludes that NY State is out of compliance with the law.
Here is a short trailer, in which Maria describes her experience being shackled during labor and delivery.
Watch the entire 6-minute video here.
Shackling pregnant women is a dangerous and degrading practice that causes suffering, endangers the health and safety of women and their babies, and violates basic standards of human rights and decency. The practice is also unnecessary as security can be effectively maintained by correction staff when pregnant women are off prison grounds.
Learn more about shackling and other reproductive justice issues impacting incarcerated women in the Correctional Association’s released report, Reproductive Injustice: the State of Reproductive Health Care for Women in New York State Prisons.
We are deeply grateful to Cori, Ursulina, Tina and Maria for bravely sharing their experiences in this video, and to all the women who have joined them in helping to lead this critical campaign.
Correctional Association of New York releases “Solitary at Southport: A 2017 Report Based Upon the Correctional Assn.’s Visits, Data Analysis, & First-Hand Accounts of the Torture of Solitary Confinement from One of New York’s Supermax Prisons”
New York, NY (December 13, 2017): Today The Correctional Assn. of NY (CA), founded in 1844 and one of the oldest prison watchdog organizations in the country, released a 92-page report providing graphic first-hand depictions of physical, mental, and emotional abuse as a result of days, weeks, and often years of being caged in solitary confinement for 23 to 24 hours a day.Read More
Southport Correctional Facility is one of two super-maximum security prisons in the state that places an emphasis on solitary confinement. A new report looking at the facility’s practices is highlighting the negative impact solitary confinement can have on a human. So advocates are making a renewed push for the HALT Act. Joining us to talk [...]Read More
“Solitary at Southport: A 2017 Report Based Upon the Correctional Association’s Visits, Data Analysis, & First-Hand Accounts of the Torture of Solitary Confinement from One of New York’s Supermax Prisons”
“The isolation itself is torture. Mentally and emotionally, it breaks you down. Spiritually it strips you. The way it is built is to break you down as a person and push your family away.” From “Solitary at Southport” Solitary confinement is torture. New York State subjects people to solitary confinement and other forms of isolation [...]Read More
Under unique statutory authority granted to the CA in 1846, WIPP monitors conditions in women’s prisons in New York, a role played by no other group in the country. WIPP coordinates the Coalition for Women Prisoners, a statewide alliance of more than 1,800 people, and carries out advocacy campaigns to reform harmful criminal justice policies. [...]Read More