Mom wins suit after bagel causes her to lose custody of her baby

Woman had newborn daughter taken away after poppy seeds caused her to fail hospital drug test

Published On: Jul 03 2013 12:21:04 PM CDT   Updated On: Jul 03 2013 08:18:49 AM CDT
Elizabeth Mort and baby Isabella

A woman who had her newborn taken away because she failed a hospital drug test after she ate a poppy seed bagel has settled a lawsuit over the case.

The Associated Press reports that the Lawrence County's child welfare agency and Jameson Hospital have paid $143,500 to settle the suit filed on behalf of Elizabeth Mort by the American Civil Liberties Union of Pennsylvania.

Mort sued in October 2010 after a poppy seed bagel she ate shortly before arriving at the hospital caused her to fail a test for opiates in April 2010 that prompted the seizure of her 3-day-old daughter, Isabella Rodriguez.

Mort said she was home with her baby when a county child welfare caseworker arrived with an emergency protective custody order and took Isabella.

The infant was returned five days later, after local officials agreed there was no evidence the mother had used illegal drugs.

ACLU officials said Tuesday the hospital and county have implemented policy changes so newborns aren't taken from parents based only on maternal drug tests, which can be inaccurate.