A Summary Of Women In Prison Criminology Essay

Women ‘s section is one of the fastest turning sections of prison population all over the universe, but particularly in the United States. The increasing sums of adult females are locked in prisons due to different grounds. A batch of adult females in prisons are drug nuts who originally took drugs to get away a life of trouble and childhood injury. A batch of were caught being as “ mules ” in drugs trades. Besides the chief portion of adult females in prison has been victims of domestic force some clip in their lives. About all of captive adult females are from hapless and working category households.

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Here are mean demographics of adult females in prison, presented by Anti-racist group Committee to End the Marion Lockdown. During the old ages 1980 and 1993, the female population of prison increased about 313 % , at the same clip work forces increase 182 % during the same period. In 1993 the figure of adult females was 5.8 % of the entire prison population and 9.3 % of the whole gaol population.

Womans captives are divided like this: African American adult females – 46 % , White adult females – 36 % , and Hispanic Women – 14 % .

The bulk of incarcerated adult females are hapless. So 53 % of adult females in prisons and 74 % of adult females in gaols were unemployed before captivity.

The imprisoning of adult females has a bad influence on her household. 67 % of adult females in prisons are female parents of kids who are under 18. 70 % of these adult females ( and merely 50 % of work forces ) had detention of their dependent kids before imprisonment. Statisticss shows that 6 % of adult females are pregnant at the minute when they go to prison.

A large sum of incarcerated adult females had domestic force. 32 % of captive adult females ( about 4,000 adult females ) are in prisons because of slayings of their hubbies, ex-husbands or fellows.

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Womans in prison suffer from force, favoritism and other sort of unfairnesss. It is known that 57 % of captive adult females have had severe and prolonged sexual and physical maltreatment. ( 3 Cristina Rathbone, A World Apart, Random House, May 2005, P. 22. ) . Bing in prison, adult females are objects of sexual misconduct from correctional staff and other captives. ( 4 GAO study “ Women in Prison: Sexual Misconduct by Correctional Staff ” June 1999, p.9 ) .

Work force and adult females are likewise subjected to imprisonment but small attending has been given to the assorted demands and jobs of captive adult females as opposed to those of work forces. This skip may reflect the fact that adult females captives are a really little minority of the overall prison population: merely four per centum worldwide.

Throughout the universe, the governments in prison are about ever created for the bulk male prison population and that is why they do n’t supply for the adult females demands.

Female captives have different mental, physical, and emotional demands, non the same as work forces have. Prisons may be unable to offer equal pregnancy and ante-natal attention, or appropriate entree to feminine hygiene merchandises. Womans can hold different demands associating to jobs such as substance dependence, mental wellness, and choler direction, sexual or physical maltreatment.

Womans in prisons have a higher degree of mental diseases and are more likely to hold been victims of all sorts of maltreatment than the general population and are at higher hazard of self-harm and self-destruction. They may react otherwise to security governments and necessitate less rough signifiers of physical restraint. In mixedsex prisons the security government may be disproportionately harsher for adult females because it is designed for work forces.

Most adult females in prison are female parents and/or the chief carer for kids, therefore it is peculiarly of import that ways be found of assisting them to keep household ties.

Research shows that tutelary sentences are non appropriate for many adult females and non effectual in cut downing piquing or reoffending. The experience of imprisonment can hold detrimental effects for both female parents and their kids and can worsen mental wellness issues or debatable drug or intoxicant dependence among adult females in prison.

So, here is a description of all degrees of imprisonment, the description of adult females ‘s life in prison and the fate of kids of adult females in prison.

1. Arrest of a adult female. Police officers may non inquire whether the adult female they are collaring has kids or let her clip to explicate to the kids what is go oning or do agreements for their attention. This increases the anxiousness of both kids and female parents and makes the apprehension more hard for the officer.

2. Pre-trial detainment. Womans may be more likely to be placed in pre-trial detainment than work forces. This is because on the indexs used to find a individual ‘s likeliness of bolting before test ( such as unafraid employment and owning or leasing belongings in one ‘s ain name ) adult females tend to come out lower. Factors such as caring duties are non taken into history.

Even if a adult female is acquitted at test, she may hold lost her occupation, her place or her topographic point on mental wellness or drug rehabilitation plans in the interim. For kids, holding a female parent placed in pre-trial detainment has many of the same effects as holding a female parent imprisoned following strong belief.

3. Sentencing. Despite their statistically little proportion in the overall prison population, the rate of imprisonment of adult females is increasing quickly. The grounds for this appear to be alterations in sentencing policy and jurisprudence enforcement precedences, instead than a alteration in the sum or badness of offense in which adult females are involved.

Badness of sentence. Attitudes towards ‘women felons ‘ may take to harsher sentences, including imprisonment for offenses for which work forces would non be imprisoned. Some favoritism against adult females reflects the societal civilization instead than specifically the condemnable justness system: therefore conflicting societal mores may take to adult females being criminalised.

Type of offense. In most states, adult females are in prison for non-violent, belongings or drug offenses. By and large, adult females have a lower engagement in serious force, condemnable harm and professional offense.

Length of sentence. In many states, a comparatively high proportion of female captives appear to function reasonably short prison sentences. It should be borne in head that a short sentence, for illustration six months, may be merely every bit riotous as a longer sentence for a adult female captive, who may lose her kids, her occupation, and her place as a consequence of the sentence.

4. Prisons. The figure, type, geographical location and distribution of national prisons will impact the quality of adult females ‘s imprisonment. The proviso in a state is normally a practical affair of the resources available, and besides reflects the penal doctrine of that state. Some factors are outlined below.

Location. Because there are fewer female captives there are fewer single-sex prisons for adult females. Womans who are held in single-sex prisons are hence more likely to be held long distances from their households and communities than work forces, doing visiting and the care of household ties more hard. This is particularly debatable for adult females who were the exclusive carers of dependent kids before their imprisonment. It besides affects other specific classs of female captives, such as juveniles, whose Numberss are even smaller.

Degree of security. Levels of security in prison are by and large put in topographic point to halt work forces get awaying, which may intend that prisons are disproportionately harsher for adult females. In add-on, the smaller figure of adult females ‘s prisons compared to work forces ‘s agencies that there is less chance to supply establishments of different security categorizations.

The prisons ‘ governments will be determined by the maximal security demand, intending that many adult females will be held harmonizing to a security categorization that is stricter than could be justified by any appraisal of the hazard that they pose.

Shared installations. Womans with diverse demands and a history of offending may be unsuitably held together under the same security government. Sometimes adult females expecting test are held with adult females who have been sentenced, which is contrary to outdo pattern. Womans who are detained in prisons which besides hold work forces may be required to portion installations and attend categories with male captives. This is non a suited environment for adult females who have experienced maltreatment or necessitate rigorous separation from work forces.

Overcrowding. Prisons are frequently overcrowded and offer reduced exercising installations, and clip spent out of cells. This force per unit area may besides cut down the Numberss of available rehabilitative programmes – educational, vocational, reding – every bit good as of drug and intoxicant dependence programmes.

Education, preparation and work. Prisons may offer a scope of educational and work chances – compulsory work or voluntary work ( either paid or unpaid ) . In single-sex prisons where there are few adult females, entree to instruction, preparation and work chances may be badly limited. In mixed-sex prisons adult females may be required to go to categories or work with male captives. This may be unsuitable and even endangering for some adult females.

In some states, adult females captives are given traditionally feminine occupations, such as catering or stitching. This is non a job if there is a market for such accomplishments outside the prison but occupations should non be allocated merely because of the gender of the captive. Women whose kids live with them in prison may non be able to work or take instruction classs if there are no child care installations. Opportunities for captives expecting test and sentenced captives may besides differ significantly.

5. Physical wellness & A ; wellness attention

General wellness and wellness attention. Women captives suffer hapless physical and mental wellness at rates and with a badness far transcending those of male captives or of adult females in the general population. Some of this may be related to the grounds why they have been imprisoned, for illustration drug usage and therefore drug dependence and associated wellness jobs. Sexual maltreatment and development of adult females before and during imprisonment can take to gynecological jobs, HIV and other sexuallytransmitted diseases, gestation, child-birth or abortion.

Disease in prisons. Diseases and infections associated with overcrowding and hapless wellness and hygiene conditions such as TB, hepatitis and HIV/AIDS, are extra hazards for adult females in prisons.

Drug & A ; alcohol dependence. Prisoners are more likely to endure from drug/alcohol dependence than in the community at big. Existing research indicates that 75 % of adult females who go to European prisons are already drug and intoxicant users and that female captives are more likely to be addicted to harder drugs than male captives.

Health attention proviso. Standards of medical attention within prisons vary greatly both from state to state and from prison to prison. When wellness attention installations are outside the prison they may offer better criterions of proviso, but they may make other jobs such as:

iˆ­iˆ The shame and uncomfortableness for adult females of being taken at that place in prison vesture or in handlocks, peculiarly if they have to wait in public countries within the infirmary.

iˆ­iˆ iˆ Shortages of prison staff cut downing the handiness of bodyguards for adult females to go to infirmary.

iˆ­iˆ iˆ Male prison staff attach toing female captives and being present during medical audiences and scrutinies.

iˆ­iˆ iˆ Perceived deficiency of security in civilian establishments taking to adult females being shackled to beds, even during child-birth.

Sexual wellness. Universally HIV among adult females captives is higher than in the general population.

HIV positive adult females hazard go throughing the disease onto their babes and unborn kids. Women ‘s high rates of drug dependence expose them to the hazard of catching HIV through sharing acerate leafs.

Female wellness & A ; hygiene. The prison may non supply for the healthful demands of adult females or adult females may hold to pay for their ain healthful proviso.

Womans who are flowing or traveling through the climacteric need regular day-to-day showers. It is mortifying for adult females to hold to utilize lavation and lavatory installations in the presence of others, most peculiarly during menses. They should besides be able to alter their bed linen often.

Older adult females may travel through the climacteric while imprisoned, and their medical and/or psychological demands need to be identified and met at this clip.

They may besides hold peculiar wellness attention demands such as endocrine replacing therapy or nutrient addendums.

Pregnancy and childbearing. Pregnant adult females in prisons need particular resources and attending to diet, exercising, vesture, medicine and medical attention.

Prison is non an easy topographic point to be pregnant and the inflexibleness of a prison government is incompatible with the demands and attention of a pregnant organic structure.

iˆ­iˆ iˆ It is more hard to catch up on lost slumber and lost repasts and difficult to take baths or showers every bit frequently as needed.

iˆ­iˆ iˆ It may be hard for the prison to transport captives to wellness attention cheques and scans, ante-natal categories and post-natal attention.

iˆ­iˆ iˆ Ante-natal and post-natal attention may non be seen as medical precedences by prison staff.

iˆ­iˆ iˆ It may be hard for a captive to see a accoucheuse.

iˆ­iˆ iˆ Alerting staff to a medical job, even the oncoming of labor, may be hard, peculiarly at dark.

iˆ­iˆ iˆ The emphasis of imprisonment can hold a hurtful impact on the development of a gestation.

iˆ­iˆ iˆ Restraining pregnant adult females in the same manner as other adult females captives may jeopardize both the adult female and the foetus.

6. Mental wellness. Mental wellness jobs are more dispersed among adult females captives than in the prison for work forces or in the general prison. A batch of adult females have jobs with lower-level of mental wellness, such as personality upset, which do non measure up them for a psychiatric bed. Such adult females may necessitate entree to interventions and therapy designed specifically for them, and even in women-only prisons conditions may non be ideal. Womans can be highly disquieted about what will go on to their kids, particularly in the early phases of detainment. Research has suggested that this can worsen or convey on mental wellness jobs.

Depression, self-harm and self-destruction. Doctors are more likely to name depression in adult females than in work forces ( even when they have similar tonss on standardised steps of depression ) and more likely to order temper changing psychotropic drugs to adult females than to work forces. Outside prison work forces are more likely to perpetrate suicide than adult females but the place is reversed inside prison, and self-harm in prison is a immense job and more prevalent among adult females in prison.

7. Violence and exposure. In those states where all captives are vulnerable to torment and inhuman and degrading intervention, adult females ( and juvenile female ) captives are peculiarly at hazard, both from male captives and from male prison guards. The power instability between captives and guards together with the closed nature of prisons provide chances for torment, development, maltreatment, harlotry, colza and indecent assault of female captives by staff, both male and female.

They may besides be subjected to mistreat and development from other captives, both male and female.

Even in states where this is non the instance, such as in the UK, adult females captives are vulnerable to other captives. A high proportion of UK adult females captives tell that they feel insecure.

The issues about safety and security of female captives include:

– iˆ Location of female cells in assorted prisons.

iˆ­iˆ iˆ Location and usage of shared installations, in peculiar showers and lavatories.

iˆ­iˆ iˆ Whether male prison guards hold ‘contact places ‘ over female captives ( stations which permit or require them to be in physical propinquity to the captives, sometimes unsupervised by other, female, staff ) .

iˆ­iˆ iˆ Strip hunts: adult females captives as a group are more likely than other adult females by and large and/or male captives to hold experienced sexual assault: this makes strip-searching particularly traumatic for them.

iˆ­iˆ iˆ The being or deficiency of effectual supervising and ailments mechanisms which enable captives to kick without exposing them to intimidation or farther abuse – for illustration, seeing a physician in the presence of guards means that force towards and maltreatment of captives by guards is less likely to be reported by the captive.

iˆ­iˆ iˆ Women who are capable to sexual maltreatment or development face the added jobs associating to the hazard of HIV and other sexually transmitted diseases, the inquiries of gestation and child-birth or abortion, and all the associated physical, mental and emotional wellness issues.

8. Mothers in prison. Most adult females in prison around the universe are female parents. Womans are more likely to be the exclusive or primary carer for kids and this factor makes the prison experience significantly different for adult females. The effects of maternal imprisonment on their households are by and large more riotous than the effects of paternal imprisonment. This is non adequately recognized by the condemnable justness system.

Since the Numberss of adult females who are sent to a prison are instead low and the inclination to direct adult females to prison for lesser nonviolent offenses is increasing, so the adult female herself can non understand the possibility of imprisonment as the result of her workss. That is why the adult female does n’t hold the chance to do any readyings or proviso for her childs before being taken into detention. Such fact can be a cause of extra emphasis for her and her childs.

Prison visits from kids. Visiting prisons can be a hard and frustrating experience for kids. So, going for a long distance, come ining a inexorable edifice, being searched, passing clip in a rough grownup environment with a female parent that 1 might non even be able to touch may be highly straitening to a kid. This in bend may do the kid ‘s carer less inclined to set about this backbreaking undertaking, every bit good as go forthing the female parent distraught and reluctant to hold farther visits from the kid.

Furthermore, the new carers may hold their ain household duties, every bit good as fiscal restraints, which put strains on taking in extra kids ( taking to kids traveling from one carer to another ) and in peculiar adding to the fiscal, clip and emotional loads of taking kids to see their captive female parent.

Evidence suggests that the kids of captive female parents, and peculiarly those who are taken into province attention during the female parent ‘s imprisonment, are at significantly greater hazard of developing condemnable behaviour in maturity than other kids.

9. Children of captive female parents. The rights and best involvements of the kids of adult females captives are seldom considered during condemnable justness procedures, even though parental imprisonment has a major impact on their lives. There are three options:

iˆ­iˆ iˆ The kid has to travel to prison with the female parent, and the effect of that.

iˆ­iˆ iˆ The kid is separated from the female parent, and the effect of that.

iˆ­iˆ iˆ Where there is more than one kid and they are treated otherwise ; i.e. one goes to prison with the female parent, the other is separated, and the effects of that.

Within each of these, there are so a figure of affairs to be considered which are encapsulated in the tabular array overleaf.

Children separated from their female parent. Children left in the community may be looked after by their male parent, grandparents, other relations or friends of the household, taken into province attention or left without carers.

Siblings may be separated from each other in order to do the state of affairs non to hard, or they may be taken into State establishments.

A captive life in insecure or rented adjustment will normally lose this when s/he enters prison and acquiring adjustment when released is frequently hard. A female parent whose kids have been placed in the attention of the province or another individual normally can non repossess detention without appropriate adjustment, so even a short prison term may take to lasting separation of households.

Registering inside informations of captives ‘ kids is non portion of the response process in many states. Some captives may non unwrap this information voluntarily for fright that their kids will be for good taken away from them. As a consequence, authoritiess do non do societal proviso or policies which address the job of kids with incarcerated parents.

The imprisonment of the female parent has a great impact on the kids ; it affects every facet of their lives and non merely the relationships with their female parent. It feels the same as while the mourning, but with less support, from the new carer, instructors, and other people. Children of captive parents have an increased inclination to exhibit aggressive and anti-social behavior compared to the general population.

Research workers have found that the effects of parental imprisonment can be serious. Surveies of captives ‘ kids systematically report that kids experience a scope of psychosocial jobs during the imprisonment of a parent, including: depression, hyperactivity, aggressive behavior, backdown, arrested development, cleaving behavior, jobs with kiping and eating, running off, hooky, low school classs and delinquency. The impact on the kids will, of class, vary harmonizing to their age, environing household and community response, environment and single character.

Babies and kids in prison. Some adult females may pass portion or all of a gestation in prison and give birth while still functioning their sentence. The bonding of an baby with her/his primary carer is indispensable for her/his long term emotional development and should be given high precedence. If female parents give birth while functioning their sentence, or are imprisoned when they have a babe or immature kid, that baby or immature kid may come into the prison to populate with them. Particular resources and installations available to fuss and babes in prison varies, but normally consist of adjustment within a specialised Mother and Baby Unit ( MBU ) . Toys are sometimes provided for the kids and the female parent may hold more freedom in footings of remaining in an unbarred room, holding entree to a kitchen in which she can fix nutrient for the kid etc.

Because of the little figure of adult females in prison who have kids populating with them, the figure of MBUs is low, significance that a female parent may be imprisoned a long manner from the remainder of her household. This creates jobs sing prison visits and keeping contact with any older kids in the household. Extra concerns about babes and kids populating in prison are the consequence this has on their development – physical, mental and emotional.

How long babes or immature kids can shack in prison with their female parents – or even whether they can make so at all – varies well across states. The separation of female parent and kid can be a really traumatic experience for them both.

Some states try and make the separation procedure every bit gradual as possible, in order to ease the hurting and injury of separation.

Babies and immature kids who are populating in prison with their female parent besides require specialised wellness attention. Womans who know that their kids will be removed from them shortly after birth may exhibit mental wellness jobs and/or reject the babe or neglect to bond with it.

10. Keeping links with household. When captive female parents are the primary carer of kids, separation from their female parents is normally more traumatic than if the male parent is incarcerated ; this is of class much worse where the female parent is the exclusive carer. Research has shown that if household ties are maintained, the opportunities of captives re-offending upon release are lowered, so it is of import to take steps to seek to continue these ties. Problems in keeping these links include:

iˆ­iˆ iˆ Doing so through letters is difficult for those with low literacy accomplishments, and self vidently debatable in relation to immature kids.

iˆ­iˆ iˆ Get the better ofing what is frequently a greater distance between the adult female and her household.

11. Specific groups of captives.

Foreign subjects. Foreign national adult females captives may be either resident or non-resident in the state where they are imprisoned. Common troubles may be faced by both male and female foreign national captives, such as jobs associating to linguistic communication and misinterpretations environing the imposts and civilizations of the host state, which may take to isolation. In prisons where the captives are dependent on external aid, whether for rudimentss such as nutrient, hygiene merchandises and vesture, or for little luxuries, adult females without household at manus to see non merely face the direct jobs of non holding such points, but are vulnerable to development by other captives or prison guards in order to have the necessities for life.

Foreign national adult females who are non resident in the state of imprisonment may frequently be really far off from their kids and households, doing them anguish and anxiousness. Their kids may non hold the fiscal means to come and see them. Telephone calls may be prohibitively expensive for both the female parent and her kids and hard to set up because of clip differences. If the kids are excessively immature to read and compose, so communicating via letters is non an option.

Many adult females foreign subjects in prison are at that place for drug smuggling and may hold left their kids in the impermanent attention of friends or household, anticipating to return in a few yearss. Imprisonment may set a adult female ‘s household ( kids and others ) in important danger from the people who employed her to smuggle drugs. Resident foreign national adult females can confront exile when they have completed their sentence, which means farther separation from their households, or their holding to relocate every bit good.

Transgender captives. Transgender captives face peculiar troubles and pose particular challenges to the prison system exactly because of the inquiry as to their categorization as male or female captives.

Racial minorities/ autochthonal captives. In many states with autochthonal populations, autochthonal adult females represent the fastest turning section of the prison population. Their “ dual minority ” position within the prison system, being both autochthonal and adult females, means that where preparation and other programmes exist they may hold to take between those intended for autochthonal work forces or for non-indigenous adult females. They may besides hold different demands from other adult females captives.

12. Post-release issues. Women go forthing prison receive changing grades of support from the prison and societal services. They may confront many jobs in add-on to the force per unit areas which may hold caused them to perpetrate their initial offense, such as: acquiring a occupation, happening adjustment, remaining drug or intoxicant free and recovering detention of kids who have been in province attention during their imprisonment. Even a short prison term may take to the female parent losing the rented adjustment in which she had been populating, and it is common for a female parent to be unable to recover detention of her kids if she does non hold anyplace to populate. This makes it really hard for adult females to restart normal lives outside of prison, and may be a factor which contributes to re-offending.

Although all released captives face issues environing their attempts to reintegrate into society, for parents these may be compounded by the demand to accommodate with kids who may hold changed ( every bit good as grown up ) during their absence. These kids may hold taken on new functions in the household and developed close relation-ships with alternate carers, both of which can do tenseness if the returning parent attempts to travel back to ‘the manner things were ‘ . Reoffending by parents can besides hold a annihilating impact on their kids, as they lose their parent for a 2nd clip.

As it was written supra, the female population in the U.S. prison is intensifying faster than the male population. Harmonizing to statistics, the U.S. has 10 times more adult females in prison than the combined states of Western Europe. ( http: //www-personal.umich.edu/~lormand/agenda/0107/womenprison.htm. Phillis Engelbert, “ Womans in

Prison ” , Agenda, July/August 2001 ) .

Womans are sent to prison for different offenses, but at that place they need a specialised attention and intervention. A batch of adult females have drug and intoxicant jobs and necessitate to be treated consequently. A batch of adult females in prison have kids and this is one more ground for particular intervention.


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