New York (CBSNewYork) — The New York City Human Rights Commission has begun investigating three private hospitals.
It came after years of complaints claiming that black and brown mothers and newborns were being tested for drugs disproportionately, CBS2’s Aundrea Cline-Thomas reported Monday.
The mother expects the newborn to stay in the hospital room after giving birth.
But for some, that doesn’t always happen.
“Baby is supposed to come to them and they will say the baby has been put on hold,” said Chanel Porchia-Albert, founder and CEO of Ancient Song Doula Services.
Porchia-Albert said this is the case, as half of the clients, especially the Bronx, tested positive for drugs, often marijuana.
“Where do you support their physical independence because this was done without their consent?” Porkia-Albert said.
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Testing and isolation are aimed at protecting newborns. However, on Monday, the Commission on Human Rights began investigating the procedures of Montefiore, Mount Sinai, and the New York Presbyterian Hospital to determine who will be tested.
“The concern is that black and Latin parents are being tested for drugs with or without consent,” said HRC Deputy Commissioner Dana Sasman.
According to the Movement for Family Power, 462 mothers were investigated for drug use during pregnancy in 2017. Nearly 70% of them are investigated by child protection services and children may be taken away from home.
“The message is that black and Latin families are either bound by different standards or are believed to be inherently less qualified,” Sasman said.
Despite data showing comparable drug use between Caucasians and people of color, mothers’ health advocates say drug tests are not universal.
People watching this may well say that parents test positive for substances in their system and their children are at risk.
“Instead of criminalizing your parents about the choices they make, find a way to help them,” said Polkia Albert.
The hospital did not respond to CBS2’s request for comment, but needs to provide data to the city.
If a disparity is determined to exist, the Commission on Human Rights can do everything from helping hospitals develop new policies to filing proceedings.
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Colored mothers were disproportionately exposed to drug tests after years of complaints investigated by three NYC hospitals – CBS New York
Source link Colored mothers were disproportionately exposed to drug tests after years of complaints investigated by three NYC hospitals – CBS New York