Two state Representatives plan to offer legislation next year that would create nurseries within Missouri’s prison system for women. Representatives Curtis Trent of Springfield and Bruce DeGroot (de-GROAT) of the St. Louis suburb of Ellisville are leading the effort. Trent says there are several potential benefits to allow model prisoners near the end of their prison term the option of raising their baby behind prison walls.
The Missouri Department of Corrections says all currently incarcerated pregnant women are assigned to the prison in eastern Missouri’s Vandalia. In 2020, 31 Missouri prisoners gave birth, compared to 49 the previous year and 68 in 2018.