Southern California breaking news and trends

New bill would prohibit shackling pregnant inmates in labor

handcuffs

Photo by The.Comedian/ flickr Creative Commons

A bill to keep officials from using leg and wrist shackles on pregnant inmates in labor was unanimously approved by the state Assembly on Tuesday.

Bill AB2530, authored by San Diego Democratic Assemblywoman Toni Atkins, is now being delivered to Gov. Jerry Brown's desk.

The bill would prohibit using leg irons, wrist chains or behind the body handcuffs on women in labor, in transit to a hospital while in labor, and after they give birth.

California law already requires that female inmates be transported in the safest and "least restrictive way possible," once a doctor declares that labor has started.

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Penn State scandal inspires new bill in California

rose bowl penn state joe paterno

Photo by kslovesbooks via Flickr Creative Commons

Penn State / USC, Rose Bowl 2009

A new bill, crafted in response to the Penn State sex abuse scandal, was unanimously passed by California lawmakers on Thursday. 

In a 69-0 vote, the Assembly approved a bill that would legally require employees of public and private higher education institutions to report suspected instances of child sexual abuse that occur on school grounds, or at a sanctioned program.

The bill's author, L.A. Democratic Assemblyman Mike Feuer, said it's not enough to depend on a person's sense of moral obligation in reporting child sex abuse. 

Under existing California law, public school teachers, aides, doctors and others are already mandated to report such claims, or face the possibility of fines and jail time.

The bill now moves to the Senate. 

Former Penn State assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky is scheduled in court on June 5.

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