Alabama Governor Kay Ivey, on Monday signed a bill into law that will require sex offender’s, who are convicted of sexually abusing children under the age of 13, to undergo chemical castration.
Chemical castration will require the parolees to take a series of pills that will reduce the production of testosterone and libido. The pills are required to be taken at least one month in advance of the parolee being released.
Inmates will be required to pay for their own treatment unless it is determined by the courts that they can not afford it.
If parolees stop taking the medication before a court allows it, they’ll be sent back to prison. The procedure can be reversed, and is not as severe as surgical castration, which would remove a man’s testicles.
The controversial bill passed through the Alabama’s state house last month, with it still being unclear if chemical castration works in helping to reduce sex crimes.
According to CNN, Ivey stated, “This bill is a step toward protecting children in Alabama.”
Although many are in favor of the bill many are not. The concern begins to sit in with the passing of such bill does it violate the Eighth Amendment, which blocks cruel and unusual punishment.
John Stinneford, a University of Florida law professor, raised the concern in a 2006 paper that laws such as this should be struck down.
Stinneford wrote,”Because chemical castration is designed both to shackle the mind and cripple the body of sex offenders, it is doubly cruel, and should be struck down as a violation of the Eighth Amendment.”
Alabama’s chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union also thinks it runs afoul of the Eighth Amendment, according to AL.com