Proposed legislation could put drug-using pregnant women behind - WGEM.com: Quincy News, Weather, Sports, and Radio

Proposed legislation could put drug-using pregnant women behind bars

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KEOKUK, Ia. (WGEM) -

A proposed bill in Iowa could send pregnant women to prison for using illegal drugs.

If the bill is passed, a woman would be charged with a Class B felony.

That's punishable by up to 5 years in prison or up to a$7,500 fine.

The lawmakers who proposed the stricter legislation say they're trying to force drug-using women to get clean.

Dr. Eloise Skelton with Keokuk Area Hospital said the damage of drugs on a fetus can be devastating.

"These babies are often times born addicted. They are agitated when they are born. They are basically having withdraw when they are born. Later in their lives some of them show they have difficulty learning. They have difficulty concentrating," said Skelton.

Dr. Skelton said if a woman is addicted to drugs and finds out she's pregnant, that woman should let her doctor know immediately so they can work together on a detox and rehab program.

 

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