Corrections official resigned over inmate abortion decision

LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) — A Nebraska corrections official resigned in protest earlier this week after the department denied an inmate’s request for an abortion.

Hayden Thomas, who was the department’s Americans With Disabilities Act coordinator since 2019, resigned Monday.

In his resignation letter, he called the decision to deny the inmate an abortion morally and legally wrong because she had a constitutional right to the procedure, The Omaha World-Herald reported.

 

“How can we possibly claim the moral authority to incarcerate others for forsaking the rule of law if we ourselves fail to uphold it and instead choose to engage in acts of public corruption or administrative malfeasance?,” Thomas wrote in his resignation letter.

The department declined to comment on the letter, which was addressed to State Corrections Director Scott Frakes.

Thomas submitted his resignation just before a federal judge ordered prison officials to transport the inmate from the state women’s prison in York to an abortion clinic in Lincoln. Thomas said in an interview that he was glad the rule of law was upheld.

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