women’s pathways to prison

Women’s pathways to incarceration differ from their male counterparts.  A decade of research by Stephanie Covington and Barbara Bloom of the Center for Gender and Justice in LaJolla, Calif. confirms that female offenders face “gender-specific adversities.”

They are more likely to be:

* survivors of sexual/physical abuse as children and/or adults

* in their early-to-mid thirties

* convicted of a drug or drug-related crime

* from fragmented/impoverished families involved in the criminal justice system

* individuals with significant substance abuse problems

* individuals with mental health problems

* unmarried mothers of minor children

* high school graduates, but limited in work history or vocational training

* predominantly women of color

We at writinginsideVT are devotees of Covington’s and Bloom’s gender-responsive & trauma-informed approaches to treatment/services in correctional settings.  We’ll be bringing you more of their research and philosophy, which nicely parallels the thrust of our program.

some cool news

Time to celebrate at writinginsideVT!

This week, we were asked to join a 10-member advisory group on “Women in Corrections Custody,” offering input and advice to the Commissioner of Corrections as the State of Vermont attempts to develop a new correctional paradigm (gender-centric and trauma-informed) for its incarcerated women.

To Commissioner Andy Pallito’s credit, he invited the authors of a recent white paper about the disturbing conditions at Chittenden Correctional Facility (writinginsideVT was an author) to join him in envisioning a new and productive strategy for women offenders that employs best practices, reduces recidivism, and ultimately increases public safety.  Marybeth and Sarah will be bringing their experiences, creative ideas, and evidence-based program to the table!  More to come…