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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 153629 Find in a Library
Title: Policing Pregnancy: The Case of Fetal Exposure to Alcohol
Journal: Social Policy Journal of New Zealand  Issue:3  Dated:(December 1994)  Pages:26-38
Author(s): M B Webb
Date Published: 1994
Page Count: 13
Type: Survey
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: New Zealand
Annotation: This article focuses on the issue of maternal consumption of alcohol during pregnancy and its implications for social policy in New Zealand.
Abstract: The most well-known consequences of maternal alcohol consumption are Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS) and Fetal Alcohol Effect (FAE), in which the features of FAS are only partially expressed. The magnitude of the problem in New Zealand is examined in terms of estimates of the number of cases and their economic impact upon individual families and society as a whole. The politics of "policing pregnancy" are discussed here in terms of the requirements the state can justifiably impose on a pregnant woman to protect the health of the fetus, the role of the state in defining parameters of maternal responsibility, and the role of motherhood in New Zealand society. To resolve the inherent conflicts between a rights-based approach and the social construction of motherhood, the rights of the individual and the rights of the state, the author proposes that the discussion must be restructured in terms of crafting policies for mutual advantage. This article stresses the need for education and an integrated approach that would reduce the problem of alcohol-exposed infants. 37 references
Main Term(s): Criminology
Index Term(s): Drug effects; Fetal alcohol spectrum disorders; Foreign courts; Foreign police; Legal moralism; New Zealand; Pregnant drug abusers
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