SB 524 First Engrossed 2012524e1 1 A bill to be entitled 2 An act relating to the restraint of incarcerated 3 pregnant women; providing a short title; defining 4 terms; prohibiting use of restraints on a prisoner 5 known to be pregnant during labor, delivery, and 6 postpartum recovery unless a corrections official 7 makes an individualized determination that the 8 prisoner presents an extraordinary circumstance 9 requiring restraints; authorizing an officer to apply 10 restraints after consulting with medical staff; 11 requiring that any restraint applied must be done in 12 the least restrictive manner necessary; requiring the 13 corrections official to make written findings as to 14 the extraordinary circumstance requiring restraints; 15 restricting the use of certain restraints during the 16 third trimester of pregnancy unless there are 17 significant security concerns documented by the 18 department or correctional institution; requiring that 19 the findings be kept on file by the department or 20 correctional institution for at least 5 years; 21 authorizing any woman who is restrained in violation 22 of the act to file a grievance within a specified 23 period; providing that these remedies do not prevent a 24 woman harmed through the use of restraints from filing 25 a complaint under federal or state law; directing the 26 Department of Corrections and the Department of 27 Juvenile Justice to adopt rules; requiring 28 correctional institutions to inform female prisoners 29 of the rules upon admission, include the policies and 30 practices in the prisoner handbook, and post the 31 policies and practices in the correctional 32 institution; providing an effective date. 33 34 WHEREAS, restraining a pregnant prisoner can pose undue 35 health risks and increase the potential for physical harm to the 36 woman and her pregnancy, and 37 WHEREAS, the vast majority of female prisoners in this 38 state are nonviolent offenders, and 39 WHEREAS, the impact of such harm to a pregnant woman can 40 negatively affect her pregnancy, and 41 WHEREAS, freedom from physical restraints is especially 42 critical during labor, delivery, and postpartum recovery after 43 delivery as women often need to move around during labor and 44 recovery, including moving their legs as part of the birthing 45 process, and 46 WHEREAS, restraints on a pregnant woman can interfere with 47 the medical staff’s ability to appropriately assist in 48 childbirth or to conduct sudden emergency procedures, and 49 WHEREAS, the Federal Bureau of Prisons, the United States 50 Marshals Service, the American Correctional Association, the 51 American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, and the 52 American Public Health Association all oppose restraining women 53 during labor, delivery, and postpartum recovery because it is 54 unnecessary and dangerous to a woman’s health and well-being, 55 NOW, THEREFORE 56 57 Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida: 58 59 Section 1. Shackling of incarcerated pregnant women.— 60 (1) SHORT TITLE.—This section may be cited as the “Healthy 61 Pregnancies for Incarcerated Women Act.” 62 (2) DEFINITIONS.—As used in this section, the term: 63 (a) “Correctional institution” means any facility under the 64 authority of the department or the Department of Juvenile 65 Justice, a county or municipal detention facility, or a 66 detention facility operated by a private entity. 67 (b) “Corrections official” means the official who is 68 responsible for oversight of a correctional institution, or his 69 or her designee. 70 (c) “Department” means the Department of Corrections. 71 (d) “Extraordinary circumstance” means a substantial flight 72 risk or some other extraordinary medical or security 73 circumstance that dictates restraints be used to ensure the 74 safety and security of the prisoner, the staff of the 75 correctional institution or medical facility, other prisoners, 76 or the public. 77 (e) “Labor” means the period of time before a birth during 78 which contractions are of sufficient frequency, intensity, and 79 duration to bring about effacement and progressive dilation of 80 the cervix. 81 (f) “Postpartum recovery” means, as determined by her 82 physician, the period immediately following delivery, including 83 the recovery period when a woman is in the hospital or infirmary 84 following birth, up to 24 hours after delivery unless the 85 physician after consultation with the department or correctional 86 institution recommends a longer period of time. 87 (g) “Prisoner” means any person incarcerated or detained in 88 any correctional institution who is accused of, convicted of, 89 sentenced for, or adjudicated delinquent for a violation of 90 criminal law or the terms and conditions of parole, probation, 91 community control, pretrial release, or a diversionary program. 92 For purposes of this section, the term includes any woman 93 detained under the immigration laws of the United States at any 94 correctional institution. 95 (h) “Restraints” means any physical restraint or mechanical 96 device used to control the movement of a prisoner’s body or 97 limbs, including, but not limited to, flex cuffs, soft 98 restraints, hard metal handcuffs, a black box, chubb cuffs, leg 99 irons, belly chains, a security or tether chain, or a convex 100 shield. 101 (3) RESTRAINT OF PRISONERS.— 102 (a) Restraints may not be used on a prisoner who is known 103 to be pregnant during labor, delivery, and postpartum recovery, 104 unless the corrections official makes an individualized 105 determination that the prisoner presents an extraordinary 106 circumstance, except that: 107 1. The physician may request that restraints not be used 108 for documentable medical purposes. The correctional officer, 109 correctional institution employee, or other officer accompanying 110 the pregnant prisoner may consult with the medical staff; 111 however, if the officer determines there is an extraordinary 112 public safety risk, the officer is authorized to apply 113 restraints as limited by subparagraph 2. 114 2. Under no circumstances shall leg, ankle, or waist 115 restraints be used on any pregnant prisoner who is in labor or 116 delivery. 117 (b) If restraints are used on a pregnant prisoner pursuant 118 to paragraph (a): 119 1. The type of restraint applied and the application of the 120 restraint must be done in the least restrictive manner 121 necessary; and 122 2. The corrections official shall make written findings 123 within 10 days after the use of restraints as to the 124 extraordinary circumstance that dictated the use of the 125 restraints. These findings shall be kept on file by the 126 department or correctional institution for at least 5 years. 127 (c) During the third trimester of pregnancy or when 128 requested by the physician treating a pregnant prisoner, unless 129 there are significant documentable security reasons noted by the 130 department or correctional institution to the contrary that 131 would threaten the safety of the prisoner, the unborn child, or 132 the public in general: 133 1. Leg, ankle, and waist restraints may not be used; and 134 2. If wrist restraints are used, they must be applied in 135 the front so the pregnant prisoner is able to protect herself in 136 the event of a forward fall. 137 (d) In addition to the specific requirements of paragraphs 138 (a)-(c), any restraint of a prisoner who is known to be pregnant 139 must be done in the least restrictive manner necessary in order 140 to mitigate the possibility of adverse clinical consequences. 141 (4) ENFORCEMENT.— 142 (a) Notwithstanding any relief or claims afforded by 143 federal or state law, any prisoner who is restrained in 144 violation of this section may file a grievance with the 145 correctional institution, and be granted a 45-day extension if 146 requested in writing pursuant to rules promulgated by the 147 correctional institution. 148 (b) This section does not prevent a woman harmed through 149 the use of restraints under this section from filing a complaint 150 under any other relevant provision of federal or state law. 151 (5) NOTICE TO PRISONERS.— 152 (a) By September 1, 2012, the department and the Department 153 of Juvenile Justice shall adopt rules pursuant to ss. 120.536(1) 154 and 120.54, Florida Statutes, to administer this section. 155 (b) Each correctional institution shall inform female 156 prisoners of the rules developed pursuant to paragraph (a) upon 157 admission to the correctional institution, including the 158 policies and practices in the prisoner handbook, and post the 159 policies and practices in locations in the correctional 160 institution where such notices are commonly posted and will be 161 seen by female prisoners, including common housing areas and 162 medical care facilities. 163 Section 2. This act shall take effect July 1, 2012.