NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – A bill (SB 2769) that would ban a correctional institution from using restraints on pregnant prisoners has been passed by the Tennessee House and now awaits approval from Governor Bill Lee. 

The new law addresses the detention of pregnant women to ensure they’re not undergoing additional stress while in incarceration. If Governor Bill Lee signs the bill, jails and prisons will be prohibited from shackling pregnant detainees on state and local levels including during labor, transport to a medical facility, delivery and postpartum. 

The bill also mandates annual training for corrections employees who supervise or transport female inmates. 

Advocates of the bill say it is not made to give pregnant prisoners favorable treatment but instead aimed to protect the health of the mother and child. 

Exceptions in the bill include if the person in custody poses a flight risk, immediate self-harm to themselves, or the unborn child, or if they are part of a classification in jail that requires the use of restraints.