New York Mayor Bill de Blasio and the city’s Human Rights Commission released a new set of guidelines on Friday regarding pregnant women and alcohol.
According to Pregnancy Interpretive Guide, these guidelines prohibit bars and other establishments from refusing to serve pregnant women alcohol.
The guidelines, revealed by the mayor and Human Rights Commissioner Carmelyn Malalis, says what points to a violation of city’s existing human rights law.
“Judgments and stereotypes about how pregnant individuals should behave, their physical capabilities and what is or is not healthy for a fetus are pervasive in our society,” the guidelines reads.
“…and cannot be used as pretext for unlawful discriminatory decisions.”
Specifically mentioned as a sample violation is the policy of restaurants that holds its staffs from serving pregnant individuals with raw fish or drinks.
It also prohibits a bouncer from “denying a pregnant individual entrance to a bar based on the belief that pregnant
individuals should not be going to bars and/or drinking alcohol.”
According to Daily Mail, drinking during the first weeks of pregnancy can cause irrevocable damage to an unborn foetus.
During the early stages, when most women will be totally ignorant that they are expecting – drinking can cause symptoms of fetal alcohol syndrome, including stunted growth and death as well.
Scientists at the University of Helsinki studied the impacts. They gave a warning that their research supports the theory that drinking in pregnancy does harm the baby.
Federal health officials advise that drinking during pregnancy must be avoided as many studies have proved that alcohol abuse can harm the foetus, says BuzzFeed News.
However, some studies have said that light drinking during pregnancy has no negative effect on the child. But the risk is insurmountable.
According to The Guardian, severe damage on an unborn foetus by her mother’s heavy drinking during pregnancy is equivalent to an attempt at manslaughter.
In 2014, lawyers opened a claim for compensation on behalf of a little girl. Lawyers pointed out that she deserved to receive payments from the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority (CICA).
The lawyers argued that the mother’s action contained the crime of poisoning the little girl, under section 23 of the Offences Against the Person Act 1861.