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Women in prisons

"This Practice Brief focuses on the benefits of establishing healthy social and civic connections through mentoring of criminal justice-involved women" (p. 3). Sections contained in this publication include: issue overview; what mentoring is; mentoring and gender; policy and legislation; the WPA (Women's Prison Association) approach to mentoring women in reentry; other mentoring programs; and challenges in implementing mentoring programs.

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This is an excellent article if you want to understand how inmates feel about incarceration. "A new theoretical framework looks at punishment from the prisoner's perspective and reveals how the lived experience of punishment differs from the punishment conceived by lawmaker" (p. 1). Sections cover: what punishment is; the salience and severity of punishment; narratives of penal consciousness; the role of supervision style and gender; and potential policy implications.

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"This training curriculum, together with the UNODC Handbook on Women and Imprisonment, aims to assist legislators, policymakers, prison managers, staff and non-governmental organizations to acquire knowledge and skills to address the gender-specific needs of women prisoners and to explore and utilize ways to reduce their unnecessary imprisonment, in line with the provisions of the Bangkok Rules" (p. 9). The twelve modules comprising this training program are: identifying the needs of women prisoners and addressing discrimination; admission, registration, and allocation; health care; safety and security; contact with the outside world; prisoner rehabilitation; pregnant women and women with children in prison; special categories of women prisoners; preparation for release and post-release support; staff working with women prisoners; research, planning, and evaluation; and non-custodial measures. Appendixes cover: handout materials for participants; test questions and answers; training of trainers—background material; background on mental health and related issues in prisons; and End-of-Workshop Evaluation.

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This website provides access to TEDx videos given at the Washington Corrections Center for Women (WCCW) "Does Gender Matter" event on March 14, 2015. Topics range from the "Northern Cree Women's Honor Song" by the Broken Wing Center, "Tell Me You Don’t See" by Tiffany Williams, "Summon Your Courage" by Cathryn Cummings, "The Hard Stuff" by Felice Davis, "Judging Societie by Women's Prison" by Emily Salisbury, to "Coming to a Neighborhood Near Your" by Marriam Oliver". There are 21 talks.

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This report examines the state of federal civil rights protections for incarcerated women to explore women’s experiences while incarcerated. It covers a range of issues incarcerated women face, including access to healthcare, prevention of sexual assault, discipline and segregated housing, parental rights, and availability of programming. The report provides examples of prison administrations seeking to address these issues and it evaluates the response of the federal government. The Commission’s research includes examination of high rates of a history of trauma reported by incarcerated women, as well as policies responsive to this trauma. The report also offers recommendations to Congress and the executive branch.


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