July 18, 2018

Wyden Co-sponsors Bill to Stop Trump Administration from Detaining and Shackling Pregnant Women

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden said today he is co-sponsoring legislation that would protect the health and safety of pregnant women and young people in immigration detention.

The Stop Shackling and Detaining Pregnant Women Act introduced by U.S. Sen. Patty Murray (D-WA) would reinstitute the Obama-era policy that presumed the release of pregnant women and youth from immigration custody. The Trump administration had secretly ended the policy last year before announcing its new policy in March. The bill also would prohibit the U.S. Department of Homeland Security from shackling pregnant women in its custody, and set new standards of care and transparency for the treatment of pregnant women and young people.

“It’s a sad commentary on Donald Trump and his administration that legislation is even necessary to prevent them from shackling and detaining pregnant women,” Wyden said. ”This bill is urgent business to put an immediate halt on the Trump administration cavalierly endangering the lives of mothers and infants.”

The bill introduced by Murray, ranking member of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee, is co-sponsored by Wyden and 20 other senators. They are Sens. Catherine Cortez Masto (D-NV), Dick Durbin (D-IL), Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), Tom Carper (D-DE), Tammy Baldwin (D-WI), Bob Menendez (D-NJ), Patrick Leahy (D-VT), Mazie Hirono (D-HI), Ed Markey (D-MA), Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), Cory Booker (D-NJ), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), Kamala Harris (D-CA), Tina Smith (D-MN), Chris Coons (D-DE), Jack Reed (D-RI), Bernie Sanders (I-VT), Tammy Duckworth (D-IL), and Amy Klobuchar (D-MN).

The Stop Shackling and Detaining Pregnant Women Act has been endorsed by the American Civil Liberties Union, American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, Women’s Refugee Commission, National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health, Planned Parenthood Federation of America, Association of Maternal & Child Health Programs, NARAL Pro-Choice America, The Center for Reproductive Rights, National Asian Pacific American Women’s Forum, Human Rights Watch, Guttmacher Institute, Church World Service, MomsRising, Amnesty International, Anti-Defamation League, March of Dimes, and National Council of Jewish Women, Inc.

A summary of the bill is available here.