South Carolina General Assembly
123rd Session, 2019-2020

Download This Bill in Microsoft Word format

A136, R141, H3967

STATUS INFORMATION

General Bill
Sponsors: Reps. Mace, Trantham, Kimmons, Crawford, Henderson-Myers, Bernstein, McCoy, Fry, Magnuson, Allison, Henegan, Thayer, Cobb-Hunter, King, Brawley, Dillard, Davis, Hewitt, Spires, Collins, Sottile, Daning, Cogswell, Taylor, Atkinson, Ballentine, Bannister, Bennett, Clary, Elliott, Huggins, Long, McDaniel, McKnight, Pendarvis, Rutherford, Matthews, G.R. Smith, Garvin, Rose, B. Cox, Caskey, Moore and Hill
Document Path: l:\council\bills\gt\5655cm19.docx

Introduced in the House on February 13, 2019
Introduced in the Senate on April 10, 2019
Last Amended on March 4, 2020
Passed by the General Assembly on May 12, 2020
Governor's Action: May 14, 2020, Signed

Summary: Inmate restraint

HISTORY OF LEGISLATIVE ACTIONS

     Date      Body   Action Description with journal page number
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
   2/13/2019  House   Introduced and read first time (House Journal-page 50)
   2/13/2019  House   Referred to Committee on Judiciary 
                        (House Journal-page 50)
   2/20/2019  House   Member(s) request name added as sponsor: Garvin
   2/21/2019  House   Member(s) request name added as sponsor: Rose
   2/26/2019  House   Member(s) request name added as sponsor: B.Cox
   3/21/2019  House   Member(s) request name added as sponsor: Caskey
   3/27/2019  House   Committee report: Favorable Judiciary 
                        (House Journal-page 69)
    4/9/2019  House   Member(s) request name added as sponsor: Moore, Hill
    4/9/2019  House   Read second time (House Journal-page 44)
    4/9/2019  House   Roll call Yeas-104  Nays-3 (House Journal-page 44)
   4/10/2019  House   Read third time and sent to Senate 
                        (House Journal-page 10)
   4/10/2019  Senate  Introduced and read first time (Senate Journal-page 18)
   4/10/2019  Senate  Referred to Committee on Corrections and Penology 
                        (Senate Journal-page 18)
   2/27/2020  Senate  Polled out of committee Corrections and Penology 
                        (Senate Journal-page 13)
   2/27/2020  Senate  Committee report: Favorable Corrections and Penology 
                        (Senate Journal-page 13)
    3/4/2020  Senate  Amended (Senate Journal-page 97)
    3/4/2020  Senate  Read second time (Senate Journal-page 97)
    3/4/2020  Senate  Roll call Ayes-42  Nays-0 (Senate Journal-page 97)
    3/5/2020          Scrivener's error corrected
   3/10/2020  Senate  Read third time and returned to House with amendments
   5/12/2020  House   Concurred in Senate amendment and enrolled
   5/12/2020  House   Roll call Yeas-117  Nays-0
   5/12/2020          Ratified R  141
   5/14/2020          Signed By Governor
   5/19/2020          Act No.  136

View the latest legislative information at the website

VERSIONS OF THIS BILL

2/13/2019
3/27/2019
3/29/2019
2/27/2020
3/4/2020
3/5/2020


(Text matches printed bills. Document has been reformatted to meet World Wide Web specifications.)

(A136, R141, H3967)

AN ACT TO AMEND THE CODE OF LAWS OF SOUTH CAROLINA, 1976, BY ADDING SECTION 24-13-35 SO AS TO PROVIDE REQUIREMENTS CONCERNING THE TREATMENT OF FEMALE INMATES, AND TO PROVIDE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE AUTHORIZATION OF PERIODIC VISITS BETWEEN SUCH INMATES AND THEIR MINOR DEPENDENTS.

Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of South Carolina:

Inmate rights, limitation of liability

SECTION    1.    Article 1, Chapter 13, Title 24 of the 1976 Code is amended by adding:

"Section 24-13-35.    (A)    Notwithstanding another provision of law, a person officially charged with safekeeping of inmates, whether the inmates are awaiting trial or have been sentenced and confined in a state correctional facility, local detention facility, or prison camp or work camp shall not restrain by leg, waist, or ankle restraints an inmate with a clinical diagnosis of pregnancy.

(B)    Wrist restraints may be used during any internal escort or external transport. The wrist restraints only shall be applied in the front and in a way that the pregnant inmate may be able to protect herself and the fetus in the event of a fall. This provision also applies to inmates not in labor or suspected labor who are escorted out for Ultrasound Addiction Therapy for Pregnant Women or other routine services. The director of the facility must be notified anytime an inmate is transported externally for delivery.

(C)    The following inmates must not be placed in any restraints, including wrist restraints, unless there are reasonable grounds to believe the inmate presents an immediate, serious threat of hurting herself, staff, or others, including her fetus or child, or that she presents an immediate, credible risk of escape that cannot be reasonably contained through other methods:

(1)    an inmate who is in labor, which is defined as occurring at the onset of contractions;

(2)    an inmate who is delivering her baby;

(3)    an inmate who is identified by medical staff as in postpartum recuperation;

(4)    an inmate who is transported or housed in an outside medical facility for treating labor and delivery;

(5)    an inmate for induction once the intravenous line has been placed and the induction medication has been started;

(6)    an inmate who is being transported from the holding room to the operating room for C-section; or

(7)    an inmate during initial bonding with a newborn child, including nursing and skin-to-skin contact. If restraints are required, they should allow for the mother's safe handling of her infant.

(D)    When the use of restraints during labor occurs, officers must immediately notify the director of the facility of the reasons why restraints were applied and an incident report must be completed.

(E)    Upon medical discharge, wrist restraints must be applied for transport back to the facility. Leg restraints may be applied when there are reasonable grounds to believe the inmate presents an immediate, serious threat of hurting herself, staff, or others, or that she presents an immediate, credible risk of escape that cannot be reasonably contained through other methods.

(F)    Waist restraints shall not be used at any time during pregnancy or postdelivery, to include transport back to the facility.

(G)    If a state correctional facility, local detention facility, prison camp or work camp, or the employees of these facilities are unaware that an inmate is either pregnant or has been clinically diagnosed as pregnant, then neither the facility nor its employees are legally liable or responsible for any loss or damage suffered by the inmate under this section.

(H)    Correctional facility, local detention facility, and prison or work camp employees, other than certified healthcare professionals, must not conduct invasive body cavity searches of known pregnant inmates unless there is a reasonable belief the inmate is concealing contraband.

(I)    Correctional facilities, local detention facilities, and prison or work camps must ensure known pregnant inmates are provided sufficient food and dietary supplements as ordered by a physician, physician staff member, or a facility nutritionist to meet generally accepted prenatal nutritional guidelines.

(J)    Correctional facilities, local detention facilities, and prison or work camps must not place a known pregnant inmate, or any female inmate who has given birth within the previous thirty days, in restrictive housing unless there is a reasonable belief the inmate will harm herself, the fetus, or another person, or pose a substantial flight risk. This subsection does not apply if protective custody is requested by a known pregnant inmate or any female inmate who has given birth within the previous thirty days.

(K)    Correctional facilities, local detention facilities, and prison or work camps must not assign a known pregnant inmate to any bed that is elevated more than three feet from the facility's floor.

(L)    Correctional facilities, local detention facilities, and prison or work camps must ensure that sufficient menstrual hygiene products are available at each facility for all women under their care who have an active menstrual cycle. Indigent inmates must be provided the hygiene products at no cost.

(M)    Correctional facilities, local detention facilities, and prison or work camps must limit, when practical, bodily inspections of a female inmate by male officers when the female inmate is naked or only partially clothed.

(N)    To the extent practicable, the Department of Corrections must authorize minor dependents to visit inmates with low or minimum-security classifications at least once per week, and authorize contact visits for these inmates with the minor dependents."

Time Effective

SECTION    2.    This act takes effect upon approval by the Governor.

Ratified the 12th day of May, 2020.

Approved the 14th day of May, 2020.

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This web page was last updated on June 8, 2020 at 9:47 AM