During today’s voting session, State Representative Marlene Anielski (R-Walton Hills) helped to pass House Bill 325, legislation targeted at encouraging expectant mothers who are addicted to heroin and opiates to seek medical help.

HB 325, or “Maiden’s Law,” requires certain healthcare professionals to encourage pregnant women to seek drug treatment while providing limited protection from civil or criminal liability to those professionals.

“It is absolutely vital that expectant mothers that are struggling with heroin or opiate abuse get the proper forms of treatment to ensure the safety and well-being of themselves and the unborn child,” Rep. Anielski said.  “Our state is taking another step in the right direction to combat the drug epidemic that has plagued our state for far too long.” 

In addition, it establishes that a children’s services agency cannot file a complaint or remove a child simply because the newborn’s mother used a controlled substance while pregnant, so long as the mother:

1. Enrolls in a drug treatment program prior to entering her 21st week of pregnancy;
2. Successfully completes, or be in the process of completing, a program and is in compliance with the program’s terms and conditions as determined by the treatment provider; and
3. Maintains her regularly scheduled appointments and prenatal care recommended by her healthcare provider for the remaining duration of her pregnancy.

House Bill 325 now awaits Senate consideration.

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