Christia Mercer on incarcerated women

The United States contains 5% of the world’s women and 33% of its incarcerated women, more per capita, and in absolute terms, than any other country in the world. Though that’s only 7% of the US prisoner population overall, the statistics don’t reflect the uniquely horrible circumstances many incarcerated women faced before their convictions.

They’re girls who were victimized as children, ignored in substandard schools and unprotected by social services. Girls who dropped out of high school, self-medicated with alcohol or illegal drugs and then made mistakes that got them caught up the in the prison industrial complex.

Read on.

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