Lab Statement on ICE Sterilizations

The Laboratory of Organismal Biology at Stanford University joins the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology The Government Accountability Project, and Project South, in demanding an independent and thorough investigation of the allegations by nurse Dawn Wooten, concerning the involuntary hysterectomies of detained migrant women at the Irwin County ICE Detention Facility in Georgia. 

Forced sterilization is eugenics. As scientists, we have a moral obligation to fight against science being used to violate human rights.  We rebuke all forms of forced sterilization across all spectrums of humanity. We acknowledge our nation’s history of coerced or forced medical practices disproportionately performed on Black and Indigenous people of color, from the forced sterilizations that Black women such as Fannie Lou Hamer underwent and fought against, to the enactment of Law 116 in occupied Puerto Rico until 1960. Reproductive freedom is a human right, and the United States Government must be held responsible for its violations against humanity. It should be noted that 22 US Code 2151b prohibits foreign aid designated for population planning to be allocated to programs that carry out involuntary sterilization; it is abhorrent that the country cannot keep itself to these same standards.