sassysage's Blog

Hot Off the Press: the forgotten prison population of women & girls

Posted on: March 17, 2017

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womeninprison

i’m sitting at a conference filled with doctors, nurses, psychologists and social workers who are passionate about providing good health care to people in prison. most people think don’t of prisoners unless they know someone.  they get locked away and often left to fend for themselves while in prison and when they get out.  what i’m learning at the conference is the story for women/girls in prison is much much worse.

women/girls who become incarcerated are much more likely to be a victim of physical or sexual abuse as a child than men/boys who are incarcerated.  women/girls who become incarcerated are much more likely to have had multiple types of traumas like child abuse, rape and domestic violence.  these traumatic events happen to many of them over and over while they are growing up.  this leads to mental health problems, attempted suicide and using drugs. once they get on drugs things turn. they may get with a boyfriend involved in crime who abuses and presssures them to sell drugs or even worse sell their bodies.  this sad and tragic life circumstance is how they end up getting locked up.  

does it make sense to put a victim of abuse in prison?   does it seem okay to jail a person for being forced by men into those behaviors? 

over 1 million women/girls are involved in the criminal justice system and this is most of their stories. ignoring that is a crime within itself. 

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