In July 2009, Bower was a twenty years old resident of Lawrence County, Pennsylvania. On July 12, 2009 at approximately 7:00 p.m., Bower hosted a barbecue dinner at her new home. As part of the meal, Bower consumed linguini salad with McCormick Foods Supreme Pasta salad dressing which contained poppy seeds.
So? She was pregnant.
The hospital laboratory detection level for opiate metabolites is 300 nanograms/mL, which is far lower than the 2000 nanograms/mL level set by the federal government for federal workplace testing programs. Jameson’s Policy further required that if a mother tested positive, a drug test be performed on the newborn’s urine and meconium.
So what happened?
Even though the mother noted the possibility that the positive test result came from poppy seeds, and there was no confirmation that the test result actually reflected drug use (or any other evidence that the mother used drugs), the baby wasn’t returned to the mother until 75 days after the baby’s birth.
The first two and a half months of the child’s life away from her mother? No bonding? No nursing? This is appalling. Someone needs to have some kind of life changing punishment to make sure this never happens again.
Oh, but the state cares for the child. The state must protect the child from her mother. The state is all caring. Uh huh. The state would have been perfectly willing to allow her to go across the street and abort the child and dispose of her remains. That would have been legal, no drug testing required.