AUGUSTA, Maine (Portland Press Herald) -- A LePage administration proposal that would require drug treatment providers and other professionals to report pregnant women suspected of substance abuse is receiving stiff pushback from medical organizations, women’s advocates and civil liberties groups.
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The controversial proposal from Gov. Paul LePage would expand Maine’s child abuse “mandatory reporting” law to include incidents when observers believe a fetus “has been or will be affected by substance abuse” by the mother. The bill, L.D. 1556, also would add substance abuse treatment providers to the list of “mandated reporters,” a scenario that critics said could discourage drug-addicted women from seeking treatment.