Incarcerated women and the need for a female-based system

Relias Learning

As the number of female inmates increases, the need for a system designed specifically for women grows with it.

The New York Times recently approached this topic in their article titled, “Women Inmates: Why the Male Model Doesn’t Work.” In it, author Melanie Deziel stresses the importance of developing new policies and programs for women, rather than retro-fitting what works for male inmates.

Through research, as well as interviews with former inmates including Piper Kerman (author of the Netflix series “Orange is the New Black”), Deziel explores how some current practices can lead to the dehumanization and loss of dignity/individuality for women.

Some key points raised in the article:

  • The biological needs of women, as well as family responsibilities factor in to a unique situation in regards to incarceration.
  • 75% or more of incarcerated women have suffered either physical or sexual abuse in their lifetime. Typical prison protocols…

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