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Female offenders

This paper describes assessments of female offenders used by correctional agencies and the programs and resources provided by these agencies to meet female offenders' needs. "The two, assessments and programs/services go together. The assessments tell us what is needed and the programs address identified needs" (p. 43). Topics discussed include: gender-responsive risk assessments and the risk factors they identify; women's pathways to crime—child abuse pathway, relational pathway, and the social and human capital pathway; mental health, self-esteem and self-efficacy, and parental stress; risk factors by correctional setting—prisons, pre-release, and probation; translating the gender-specific research into practice; interventions for women offender populations; and the Gender-Informed Practices Assessment (GIPA) 12 domains.

Women's Risk Factors and New Treatments/Interventions for Addressing Them: Evidence-Based Interventions in the United States and Canada Cover

This presentation is a very good introduction for the impact of trauma on female offenders, and the need for justice-informed practices. It may be from Canada, but it speaks to all of the issues facing female trauma and incarceration in the United States. Topics discussed include: why trauma is an important issue; defining trauma; vicarious trauma; trauma-informed practices; voices of trauma—a call for help; triggers and trauma reactions; trauma-informed versus trauma-specific; where trauma-informed practices should be used; guidelines for trauma-informed practices in women's substance use services; trauma-informed vs. not trauma-informed; pathways to trauma-informed practices; and future directions.

Women Trauma and Incarceration cover

“Women who are battered by their partners are everywhere – and that includes in your local jail. Unfortunately, in many communities, jailed women are quite invisible, even to battered women’s organizations. If you are not already doing so, we want you (and other community-based advocates) to work with jailed women. Since you are reading this manual, we assume you are interested in doing work with jailed battered women, or are already doing so … Working with jailed women can be complicated and difficult. Since the women have open criminal charges or are serving sentences (and still may have open legal issues), the stakes are high. We hope this manual will encourage and guide you in thinking about ways of being thoughtful and strategic about how you approach your work with jailed battered women” (p. 1). Sections of this guide include: introduction; battered women in jail; before you begin—things to consider; defense-based advocacy; confidentiality; jail-based advocacy; overcoming barriers; advocacy fundamentals with battered women in jails; special considerations; individual advocacy; group advocacy; systems advocacy; and closing. Also included is “Advocacy Basics for Working With Battered Women Charged With Crimes.”

Working With Battered Women in Jail: A Manual for Community-Based Battered Women’s Advocates Cover

"Although women and girls in the criminal justice system account for a small percentage of the overall incarcerated population, that number is growing at an alarming rate. Presenters provide an overview of emerging research regarding what works for women and girls who have been involved in the criminal justice system. This session discusses how best practices for working with women and girls during incarceration and throughout the reentry continuum have taken shape."

Working with Women and Girls: Gender-Responsive Treatment Strategies in Corrections Cover

"This practice brief was designed to summarize the available research on female perpetrated violence. Information in this area is still quite limited. However, there is a growing body of evidence to suggest that females who engage in violence are not a homogenous group and that there are some important differences in the context and expression of violent behavior across gender. We will examine a host of personal, contextual, cultural, and victimization-related factors among females charged with intimate partner violence and other violent crimes. This information will then be translated into recommendations for assessment and intervention" (p. 1). Several parts make up this document. Part 1—A Review of the Research: overview; prevalence rates; risk factors; and types of perpetrators and motives surround use of violence. Part II—Implications for Assessment: standardized screening and assessment tools; and conducting a comprehensive interview. Part III—Implications for Intervention Approaches and Strategies: general considerations for treatment; and treatment programs to address violence. Part IV—Conclusion.

Working With Women Who Perpetrate Violence: A Practice Guide Cover

"This third edition of the World Female Imprisonment List shows the number of women and girls held in penal institutions in 219 prison systems in independent countries and dependent territories. The figures include both pre-trial detainees/remand prisoners and those who have been convicted and sentenced. The List also shows the percentage of women and girls within each national prison population and the proportion of the national population that are imprisoned females (the female prison population rate per 100,000 of the national population). The information is the latest available at the end of July 2015. In addition, this edition includes information about trends in female prison population levels since 2000" (p. 1). Some of the findings from this report are: 700,000 women and girls are being held in correctional institutions throughout the world. A little over 29% of these are held in the United States (205,400). China (103,766), the Russian Federation (53,304), and Thailand (44,751) follow. The largest increase in incarceration has been in Oceania (103.3%) with the smallest in European countries (4.4%).

World Female Imprisonment List|Third Edition Cover

"More than 200,000 women are locked in jails and prisons in the United States. These prisoners are routinely subjected to solitary confinement, spending at least 22 hours a day without human interaction for days, weeks, or months at a time. And yet, the solitary confinement of women is often overlooked. The negative psychological impacts of solitary confinement are well known. This briefing paper highlights the unique harms and dangers of subjecting women prisoners to this isolation and makes the case for needed reforms in to address these unique harms. As the number of incarcerated women climbs at an alarming pace, women and their families and communities are increasingly affected by what happens behind bars. It is critical to address the treatment of women in prison—especially those women subjected to the social and sensory deprivation of solitary confinement." Sections cover: women behind bars; what solitary confinement is; five problems for women in solitary confinement; transgender women in solitary; and recommendations to address these challenges.

Worse than Second-Class: Solitary Confinement of Women in the United States Cover

“Over the past few years, young women of color have been represented at a disproportionately high rate among clients coming to Community Legal Services (CLS) for help with barriers to employment caused by criminal records. This is particularly notable, as the vast majority of research, programming, and policy attention regarding criminal records and barriers to employment have focused on men. The impact of criminal records on young women seeking employment has largely been overlooked” (p. 2). This publication presents data showing the degree to which minority women are impacted by their past criminal records. Sections cover: issue overview; observations from CLS’s experiences with young female clients; local and national trends in arrest data, by gender; characteristics of women with criminal records; impact on employment; and five policy recommendations to address long-term joblessness of female offenders.

Young Women of Color with Criminal Records: A Barrier to Economic Stability for Low-Income Families and Communities Cover

Now in its 14th edition, an updated online version of the Corrections Environment Scan is presented here. Renamed the Corrections Environmental Scan in 2017, it continues to evolve into a popular tool that corrections practitioners use to inform their work in jails, prisons, and community supervision.

The report is arranged into five topics: Population Demographics, Economy, Workforce, Technology, and Statistics, with the special highlighted topic: Justice Involved Women. The Corrections Environmental Scan is intended to give a broad overview of the latest news and trends in these topics, from the corrections, domestic, and global perspectives.

Changes and forces that may affect the programming of the National Institute of Corrections are analyzed and commented on. This update contains the following sections: international developments; social and demographic trends; public opinion and public policy; the economy and government spending; the workforce; technology; crime and justice trends; and corrections populations and trends.

Environmental Scan Update - 2005 Cover


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