Women In The Justice System
by Incarcerated Flavors
The number of women in prison, a third of whom are incarcerated for drug offenses, is increasing at nearly double the rate for men. These women often have significant histories of physical and sexual abuse, high rates of HIV infection, and substance abuse. Large-scale women’s imprisonment has resulted in an increasing number of children who suffer from their mother’s incarceration and the loss of family ties.
Over the past decade, there has been a noticeable change in the prison population.
A smaller percentage of black women are being incarcerated, and that decrease is almost matched by the increase of white women who are going to prison.
That’s one of the most striking findings from a new report by The Sentencing Project, a non profit in Washington, D.C.
“What we saw in the first decade of the 21st century was a dramatic shift in the racial composition of prison populations,” Marc Mauer, executive director of The Sentencing Project, told Here & Now. “For the first time in nearly 40 years, we saw a sharp decline in the number of African Americans in prison – particularly women. We saw a steep rise in the number of white women going to prison, and among Hispanics we saw we saw a rise among women and a slight decline among men.