South Dakota Sued For Using Catheter In Toddler Drug Screen

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (AP) – The American Civil Liberties Union is suing South Dakota over the forced use of a catheter to take a urine sample from a 3-year-old boy.

The toddler was being tested for exposure to drugs as part of child-neglect investigation.

The ACLU on Thursday filed a pair of federal lawsuits challenging the practice, saying that it violated the constitutional rights of the boy as well as five adults who underwent the same procedure in separate cases.

Heather Smith is executive director of the ACLU of South Dakota. She described the procedure as “painful, physically and emotionally damaging, and deeply degrading.”

The boy’s mother says she was coerced into giving consent for the catheter.

The state Department of Social Services department had no immediate comment.

The complaint says the child tested negative.

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