North Carolina will stop shackling pregnant inmates in labor

Posted at 10:19 AM, Mar 27, 2018
and last updated 2018-03-27 10:19:49-04

North Carolina's prison system will no longer shackle pregnant inmates to their hospital beds while they are giving birth.

The News & Observer of Raleigh reports the change comes in response to a complaint about two women whose names were not released.

Prisons director Kenneth Lassiter signed the new policy Monday, preventing the use of leg or waist restraints on pregnant inmates and removing wrist restraints once the inmate is in labor, unless she's clearly a threat to herself or others or poses an immediate risk of escape.

The policy does allow handcuffs while a pregnant inmate is being transported, however.

Last year, 81 inmates gave birth while imprisoned in North Carolina.