our mission

National Advocates for Pregnant Women (NAPW), established as a 501(c)(3) organization in 2001, works to secure the human and civil rights, health and welfare of all women, focusing particularly on pregnant and parenting women, and those who are most vulnerable to state control and punishment - low income women, women of color, and drug-using women.

Nationwide Coalition Calls on Department of Justice to Denounce Enhanced Sentence for Pregnant Woman

Today, a coalition of 48 reproductive justice, drug policy reform, women’s rights and civil liberties organizations sent a letter to Attorney General Eric Holder calling on the U.S. Department of Justice to renounce enhanced criminal penalties for women on the basis of pregnancy. The letter was co-signed by organizations in ten states and the District of Columbia.

In the case at issue, Lacey Weld pled guilty to the crime of conspiracy to manufacture methamphetamine. According to a statement issued by U.S. Attorney William C. Killian of the Eastern District of Tennessee, she was given an enhanced sentence—an additional six years in federal prison—because she was pregnant at the time she committed the crime. Read more in the National Coalition letter here.

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Image credit: Young Women United

Join NAPW in Challenging Arrests of Alabama's Moms

Are you in Alabama? Do you know or love someone in Alabama?

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NAPW has documented more than 130 arrests of pregnant women in Alabama under a law that the state Supreme Court judicially expanded (with citation to biblical authority) to permit the arrests of pregnant women who use any controlled substance - even prescribed medications. Many of these pregnant women and new mothers are held in jail with bail set at outrageously high levels. Some mothers have been sentenced to long terms in Tutwiler prison, a maximum-security prison where women are at risk for rape, sexual assault, and other human rights violations. While NAPW is working with local lawyers to defend the women who have already been arrested, we know this is not enough. As a result, NAPW and the Carr Center for Reproductive Justice at NYU School of Law are announcing a call for plaintiffs. We are seeking brave women, doctors, and methadone treatment providers to join an affirmative civil rights lawsuit to declare this law unconstitutional and stop new arrests of pregnant women. Please take a stand and join this lawsuit and/or help us spread the word. For more information about how to join the lawsuit, see "National Advocates for Pregnant Women Seeks Plaintiffs to Challenge Alabama Law Used to Arrest and Prosecute Pregnant Women."

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what's new

Staff Attorney, Farah Diaz-Tello, speaking throughout Nashville, TN 10/15-10/17
NAPW is excited to announce that on October 15th, staff attorney Farah Diaz-Tello will begin a series of speaking engagements in Tennessee! The Tennessean reported on Ms. Diaz-Tello's visit and message: "Group says pregnant women unfairly targeted." On Wednesday, October...

ED Lynn Paltrow to speak at National Perinatal Association Conference, Oct. 16, 2pm
This Thursday, October 16th at 2:00 pm, Lynn Paltrow will be giving a talk entitled “Pregnant Women and Perinatal Care in the Age of Mass Incarceration” at the National Perinatal Association’s Annual Conference in St. Louis, MO. This year’s conference...

Farah Diaz-Tello Lectures on TN Pregnancy Criminalization Law at Meharry Medical College, Oct. 7, 3:00pm

NAPW Participates in United Nations' Second Review of the USA Under the Universal Periodic Review (UPR) process