Resources on Justice Involved Women - General
"Because fewer women are convicted of crimes and incarcerated compared to men, they can be overlooked for what may be ideal approaches to reduce crime and recidivism … The toolkit provides suggestions for innovative and focused interventions targeting the special risks and needs of women in the justice system. It provides an overview of risk and needs assessments, case management approaches, principles, strategies and programs that take into account the needs of women (gender-responsive). There are recommendations for creating community-based options for women and 10 key steps for working toward sustainable reductions in the number of women in county jails and the creation of gender-responsive community justice systems" (p. 1). Sections included in this report are: introduction; historical criminal justice and public health reforms bring new opportunities, funding crucial components; principles and six strategies for effective planning, policies, and practices; best practices and programs for eight topical areas; key steps to a gender-responsive community justice system; and conclusion.
NRCJIW developed a series of Jail Tip Sheets on eight critical topics to facilitate the implementation of gender informed approaches with women in jail settings.
While the use of evidence-based practice (EBP) is being used by more and more correctional systems, EBP tend to primarily address the needs of men. Issues specific to females are often overlooked. This void can be filled with gender-specific programming and services. The National Institute of Corrections (NIC) is a great resource for information about gender-responsive topics. This article provides a glimpse at the various things NIC offers. Some of these assets are technical assistance, training programs, the Gender-Responsive Bulletin and additional material, and models of practice which can improve operational outcomes.
"As criminal justice practitioners, we need to understand that the issues facing women veterans in the justice system may be complex as a result of untreated trauma, mental illness, and substance abuse, and their unique military experiences. We must better prepare ourselves to respond. This document highlights the unique experiences and needs of women veterans who become justice-involved and offers a gender and trauma informed approach that criminal justice practitioners can use to more effectively manage this population" (p. 2). Sections of this publication include: introduction; understanding the challenges facing justice-involved women veterans; symptoms of military sexual trauma (MST); identifying and addressing the needs of these offenders; veteran screening questions to add to established criminal justice intake and assessment processes; barriers to getting women veterans the services they need; and expectations for the future related to promising national initiatives focused on justice-involved veterans.
<p>The development and implementation of the Cook County Sheriff's Department of Women's Justice Services (DWJS) is discussed. This bulletin is comprised of these sections: introduction; background; the decisionmaking process; decision point mapping example -- custody/release; creating the DWJS; gender-responsive innovations; meeting the healthcare needs of women offenders in Cook County; and challenges and accomplishments.</p>
“This document reviews ten truths about justice involved women—gleaned from the research over the last few decades —that must be recognized if we are to successfully manage this population, achieve greater reductions in recidivism, and improve public safety outcomes. It is our hope that by understanding these truths, criminal justice policymakers and practitioners will be more aware of gender differences and take steps to enhance their approaches to managing justice involved women” (p. iii). Some of these truths are: women are a fast-growing criminal justice population, yet they pose a lower public safety risk than men; traditional criminal justice policies and practices have largely been developed through the lens of managing men, not women; gender responsive assessment tools can enhance case management efforts with justice involved women; women are more likely to respond favorably when criminal justice staff adhere to evidence-based, gender responsive principles; and the costs of overly involving women in the criminal justice system are high.
This study involved an assessment of the relevance of women’s background characteristics for predicting their offending in prison. Data were collected from over 650 women confined in a large prison for women in a Midwestern state, and the relative effects of these factors were examined. Findings revealed that background characteristics reflecting social demographics (e.g. race, sexual orientation) and women’s life experiences (e.g. abuse as achild) were relevant for predicting women’s violent and nonviolent misbehavior in prison.
This is a one page infographic about Trauma Informed Organizations.
Individuals who want an up-to-date understanding of gender-responsive issues and all those who work with female offenders should read this document report. It “outlines the risks faced by women deprived of their liberty of being subjected to torture and ill-treatment and measures that can be taken to reduce such risks. The main focus of the paper is the situation of women in detention in the criminal justice system, though the discussion is in many cases equally relevant to women deprived of liberty in other contexts, such as psychiatric institutions and immigration detention facilities” (p. 3). Sections contained in this document include: introduction to gender-specific treatment; why monitoring bodies should look at this issue; concepts—gender and gender mainstreaming, and discrimination and violence against women; risk factors and measures to reduce risk—certain contexts which heighten risk, certain times that heighten risk, certain policies and practices that heighten risk or cause physical or mental suffering, and certain categories of women who are at heightened risk(girls, victims of human trafficking and sex workers, women with mental healthcare needs, and other groups; and the qualities monitoring bodies need to be effective in this endeavor.
The goal of this report is to foster understanding of the role of gender in the New York City justice system. This report also aims to bridge information gaps—to help those steeped in criminal justice reform to better understand the unique needs of women, and to help those steeped in women’s services to better understand the context of the criminal justice system.