Reproaction Distributes Flyers at Free and Low-Cost Prenatal Care Providers in Milwaukee

| Reproaction

By: Nataley Neuman

On June 3, I took action on Milwaukee’s Historic South Side by distributing Reproaction’s informational flyers on the harm done through continued enforcement of the Unborn Child Protection Act (Act 292) at free and low-cost prenatal care providers. I visited the Aurora Walker’s Point Community Clinic, the Sixteenth Street Clinic, and the Gerald L. Ignace Indian Health Center in Milwaukee’s Walker’s Point neighborhood.

Act 292, referred to by some as the “cocaine mom law,” allows Wisconsin to accuse certain pregnant people of “unborn child abuse.” Specifically, the law allows the state to take certain pregnant people into custody, assign a lawyer to the embryo or fetus but no lawyer for the pregnant person during the proceeding, including at important early stages, and lock the person up in a drug treatment program, psychiatric hospital, or even jail – regardless of whether drug treatment is really needed. Between 2013 and 2016, more than 1,600 people were investigated for alleged “unborn child abuse” under Act 292. A federal court ruled the law unconstitutional in 2017, but it was kept in place due to the efforts of now former Governor Scott Walker and former Attorney General Brad Schimel.

I distributed flyers at three free and low-cost prenatal care providers in Walker’s Point, a neighborhood in South Milwaukee. Milwaukee’s Walker’s Point neighborhood is predominantly Latinx, making up at least 67 percent of the population. [1] I was greeted by staff members or security guards when entering each clinic. I left the flyers in visible locations at each center, such as information desks, on billboards, and next to educational brochures. I strategically placed each stack of  eight to 10 flyers in these spaces so incoming patients would be able to see them upon entering the clinic. In total, I left more than 30 flyers in three different locations around Milwaukee’s South Side.

Distributing flyers at prenatal care providers is an incredibly important aspect of the #WIFights292 campaign, as the campaign seeks to educate those who may be subjected to enforcement of Act 292. It is critical to educated people who are already heavily policed – including low-income folks, immigrants and migrants, trans folks, and people of color – about the harm done through Act 292. All people who visit free and low-cost prenatal care providers deserve to know their rights and that there are resources available. [2]

Act 292 doesn’t just harm marginalized communities in the Badger State. Continued enforcement of this regressive law impacts people living in every county in Wisconsin. Governor Tony Evers has the power to stop enforcement of Act 292. Take action here and demand Governor Evers restore the human rights and liberty of pregnant people in Wisconsin.


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