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Women in prison: Histories of Trauma and Abuse Highlight the Need for Specialised Care
NIC News & Updates


Women in PrisonPublished in Conversation US, an independent source of news, this recent article discusses the history and impact of trauma on female prisoners and the importance of trauma-informed care.

Highlights from the article:

  • Australia’s female prison population has skyrocketed over the last decade, and up to 90% of female prisoners have experienced abuse before they get to jail.
  • Experiences can range from childhood abuse to sexual assault and intimate partner violence during adulthood. As a result, the majority of female prisoners suffer from complex trauma.
  • Security procedures like strip searches and pat downs – often carried out or supervised by male officers – can re-traumatise female prisoners who have experienced abuse in the past.
  • The level of complex trauma experienced by the vast majority of incarcerated women contributes to their risk of re-offending. While women on average serve significantly shorter sentences than male offenders, they tend to have a higher recidivism rates.

Access the full article


This announcement is available at NIC’s Gender-Responsive News for Women and Girls.  Feel free to forward to friends and colleagues.  Subscribe to the newsletter at

For additional resources on Justice-Involved Women go to NIC’s Women Offenders.

Posted Thu, Dec 15 2016 6:57 AM by Susan Powell


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