On November 8, 2016 the United States elected a President who has stated that there has to be some form of punishment for women who have abortions. The U.S. also elected a Vice President who currently governs Indiana, the state where Purvi Patel was arrested, tried, and convicted of feticide for attempting to have a safe abortion at home.

National Advocates for Pregnant Women (NAPW) has long known that punishing pregnant people – whatever the outcome of their pregnancies – is a present reality, not a hypothetical possibility. NAPW’s work has exposed the fact that since 1973, at least 1,000 women have been arrested, forced to undergo unnecessary cesarean surgery and other major medical interventions, or otherwise deprived of their liberty because of pregnancy. As a result of our legal advocacy, we have helped many women, including Ms. Patel, to win their freedom.

NAPW is 501(c)(3) non-profit organization and the only one devoted to challenging the arrest and punishment of pregnant women. As we explained in our New York Times Op Ed it is not enough to focus only on the existing and coming attacks on abortion. We must work across the spectrum of opinion about abortion to unite in the defense of one basic principle: that at no point in her pregnancy should a woman lose her civil and human rights.

Please donate to NAPW and join the fight for the rights and dignity of all people including pregnant women.


U.N. Condemns Confinement of Pregnant Women Based On Suspected Drug Use

In partnership with faculty and students associated with the Human Rights and Gender Justice (HRGJ) clinic at the CUNY School of Law, National Advocates for Pregnant Women successfully urged U.N. experts to recognize that detaining pregnant women suspected of drug use discriminates against women and violates their right to be free from arbitrary detention.

On Monday, October 24, 2016 the U.N. Working Group on Arbitrary Detention expressed concern for a growing trend of civil laws in the U.S. that permit the confinement of pregnant women suspected of drug or alcohol use. The Working Group underscored that deprivation of liberty on this basis is “obviously gendered and discriminatory in its reach and application.” The Working Group urged that the U.S. adopt alternative measures that do not deprive women of their liberty, and take affirmative steps to maximize funding for health care services. The Working Group also advised that federal funding for drug treatment should be made contingent on the elimination of state or local practices that threaten maternal health by authorizing involuntary detention.

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