Agencies | Governor
Virginia Regulatory Town Hall
Department of Corrections
State Board of Local and Regional Jails
Minimum Standards for Jails and Lockups [6 VAC 15 ‑ 40]
Action Amend Minimum Standards for Jails and Lockups to add requirements on restraint of pregnant offenders
Stage Proposed
Comment Period Ends 9/27/2013
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9/27/13  10:05 pm
Commenter: Elise Cleva, St. Charles Borromeo Church & Social Action Linking Together

Please make final proposed regulations limiting use of restraints on pregnant inmates

I commend the Board of Corrections’ prior approval of proposed regulations limiting the use of restraints on pregnant inmates. Restraining a pregnant woman can pose undue health risks to the woman and her pregnancy. Freedom from physical restraints is especially critical during labor, delivery, and postpartum recovery.  The Federal Bureau of Prisons, the U.S. Marshal Service, the American Correctional Association, the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, the American Medical Association, and the American Public Health Association have recognized that restraining women during labor, delivery, and postpartum recovery is unnecessary and dangerous to a woman’s health and well being and may harm her child. 

I thank the Board for implementing a compassionate and commonsense policy, and urge the Board to make these proposed regulations final when they vote again at the close of this public comment period.

I urge the Board of Corrections to include a strong public reporting requirement in the regulations to ensure accountability for and compliance with the regulations. Right now, the proposed regulations do not provide meaningful oversight through public reporting.

CommentID: 29121