WHY ARE WOMEN MOST LIKELY TO BE INCARCERATED?
“My drug use increased drastically, and I was literally living on the streets. … I started doing anything I had to do for a place to stay—like sleeping with men, letting them beat me—basically whatever they wanted.
At that point, I really hated myself and I wanted to die. I was not only smoking meth, but I was shooting it as well. … By the grace of God, I was finally arrested.”
Seventy-four percent of the women in state prison used drugs regularly before incarceration. (Bureau of Justice Statistics, 2006)
Twenty-eight percent of women are convicted of property crimes, compared to 19 percent of men. (The Sentencing Project, 2016)
Often property crimes committed by women are motivated by an economic need, primarily due to substance abuse. (Center for Gender & Justice)
Most prisoners charged with violent offenses are male: 54 percent of male prisoners compared to 37 percent of female prisoners. (The Sentencing Project, 2016)