Challenge to Wisconsin’s “Unborn Child Protection Act”

We want to share a video we made about Tammy Loertscher's experience challenging Wisconsin Act 292. We ask that you share her story with your social media community. We need her voice to be heard.

Under this law, the government can, in the context of secret juvenile court proceedings, take certain pregnant women into custody, appoint a lawyer for her embryo or fetus, and lock the woman up in a drug treatment program, mental hospital or jail based on evidence of pregnancy and current (or even past) use of any amount of alcohol or a controlled substance.

Federal Court of Appeals Decision Prevents Pregnant Woman’s Challenge to Wisconsin’s “Unborn Child Protection Act”

June 18, 2018 - Today a three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit vacated a well-reasoned decision by a federal district court that had struck down Wisconsin's Unborn Child Protection Act (Act 292) as unconstitutional. The appeals court panel avoided grappling with Act 292's numerous constitutional problems by ruling that the woman challenging it, Tamara Loertscher, could not continue to do so because she had moved out of Wisconsin.

NAPW Argues in U.S. Court of Appeals for the 7th Circuit to Defend April 2017 Decision to Strike Down Wisconsin’s Unconstitutional “Unborn Child Protection” Act

Earlier this year, the Federal District Court for the Western District of Wisconsin struck down Act 292 (also known as the "Unborn Child Protection" Act)--a law that permits detention, incarceration, and forced medical interventions on pregnant women--as unconstitutionally vague.

U.N. Working Group on Arbitrary Detention Criticizes Detention of Pregnant Women in the U.S.

In July 2017, the United Nations Working Group on Arbitrary Detention issued a report criticizing the detention of pregnant women in the United States and highlighting the harsh Wisconsin law NAPW and our allies have been working to defeat.

NAPW Fights to Preserve Court Victory Striking Down “Unborn Child Protection” Law

New York, May 18, 2017—Three weeks ago, the federal court struck down a Wisconsin law authorizing the detention, forced treatment, and incarceration of pregnant women as unconstitutional. The law allowed the state to seize control of women, detain them in jail or other locked facilities, and force them to submit to unconsented to and inappropriate treatment if they are pregnant and use – or even disclose past use of – any amount of alcohol or a controlled substance.

Federal Court Declares Wisconsin “Unborn Child Protection” Law Unconstitutional: Law permitting forced treatment and detention of pregnant women is struck down, effective immediately

On Friday evening, April 28, 2017, a federal court in Wisconsin struck down a state law authorizing the detention, forced treatment, and incarceration of pregnant women as unconstitutional.

NAPW Achieving Justice in These Unjust Times

Despite national and international developments that make many of us feel less than hopeful, NAPW has had a number of victories that remind us of the need to celebrate the accomplishments we have had.

Victories, Patel Update, TN Wrap-up, and Global Connections

NAPW challenge to Wisconsin law will go to federal court

On Sept. 30, a federal district court judge issued a ruling that allows NAPW to go forward with a constitutional challenge to Wisconsin's so-called "cocaine mom law." Passed in 1997, this law allows the state to detain pregnant women, at any stage of pregnancy, if they use or admit to past use of alcohol or drugs.

NAPW marks 2 legal victories in states that have incarcerated women based on pregnancy and drug-use claims; Appeal will free Arkansas woman, Wisconsin case moves forward

NEW YORK - On Oct. 8, the Arkansas Supreme Court reversed the conviction of Melissa McCann Arms, who was sentenced to 20 years imprisonment for introducing a controlled substance into the body of another person when she gave birth in 2013. The Arms v. State of Arkansas victory comes a week after a federal district court ruling that allowed a constitutional challenge to the 1997 Wisconsin "cocaine mom" law to go forward.

Roe v. Wade at 42: Important for All Women

On this 42nd anniversary of Roe v. Wade -- when the spotlight is on the right to decide whether or not to have an abortion -- let's remember that Roe benefits all pregnant women.