Florida Senate - 2020 SB 1838 By Senator Powell 30-00211-20 20201838__ 1 A bill to be entitled 2 An act relating to incarcerated women with newborn 3 children; amending s. 944.24, F.S.; requiring certain 4 women inmates within the state correctional system who 5 have newborn children to be allowed specified 6 visitation and physical touch privileges with their 7 newborn children; amending s. 944.09, F.S.; 8 authorizing the Department of Corrections to adopt 9 rules relating to the visiting hours and privileges of 10 certain inmates; providing an effective date. 11 12 Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida: 13 14 Section 1. Subsection (6) of section 944.24, Florida 15 Statutes, is amended, and subsection (7) is added to that 16 section, to read: 17 944.24 Administration of correctional institutions for 18 women.— 19 (6) Any woman inmate who gives birth to a child during her 20 term of imprisonment may be temporarily taken to a hospital 21 outside the prison for the purpose of childbirth, and the charge 22 for hospital and medical care must
shallbe charged against the 23 funds allocated to the institution. The department shall provide 24 for the care of any child so born, in compliance with the rights 25 afforded to the inmate under subsection (7), and shall pay for 26 the child’s care until the child is suitably placed outside the 27 prison system. 28 (7) Any woman inmate who has given birth up to 1 month 29 before being detained or sentenced or within 9 months after 30 being detained or sentenced must: 31 (a) Unless such visitation is prohibited by s. 32 944.09(1)(n)2., be allowed visitation hours with the child at 33 least 4 days a week and for at least 1-2 hours per visit until 34 the child reaches 1 year of age. If a facility is unable to 35 consistently provide the required visitation hours per day, the 36 facility may make reasonable accommodations to provide 37 consistent visitation; and 38 (b) Unless such contact is prohibited by s. 944.09(1)(n)2., 39 be allowed to make physical contact with the child, including, 40 but not limited to, holding, hugging, kissing, breastfeeding, 41 cleaning the child, and changing the child’s clothes. 42 Section 2. Paragraph (n) of subsection (1) of section 43 944.09, Florida Statutes, is amended to read: 44 944.09 Rules of the department; offenders, probationers, 45 and parolees.— 46 (1) The department has authority to adopt rules pursuant to 47 ss. 120.536(1) and 120.54 to implement its statutory authority. 48 The rules must include rules relating to: 49 (n) Visiting hours and privileges. The rules must shall50 provide that: 51 1. Except as provided in subparagraph 2., any woman inmate 52 who has given birth up to 1 month before being detained or 53 sentenced or within 9 months after being detained or sentenced 54 be provided with visitation hours with the newborn child 55 pursuant to s. 944.24(7)(a) and be allowed to make physical 56 contact with her child pursuant to s. 944.24(7)(b). 57 2. Any inmate with a current or prior conviction for any 58 offense contained in chapter 794, chapter 800, chapter 827, or 59 chapter 847 for committing or attempting to commit aggravated 60 child abuse or committing or attempting to commit a sex act on, 61 in the presence of, or against a child under the age of 16 62 years, may shallnot be allowed visitation with anyone under the 63 age of 18 years, unless special visitation is approved by the 64 warden. The authorization for special visitation must shallbe 65 based on extenuating circumstances that serve the interest of 66 the children. If visiting is restricted by court order, 67 permission for special visitation may be granted only by the 68 judge issuing the order. 69 Section 3. This act shall take effect July 1, 2020.