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December 19, 2004

New California report on women and parole

This weekend I received a copy of "Breaking the Barriers for Women on Parole," a report recently produced by California's Little Hoover Commission, a governmental watchdog agency.  This sizeable report — which runs over 100 pages but has an effective executive summary (and can be downloaded here) — addresses not only parole issues, but also California's entire correctional structure while urging using female offenders as pioneers for system-wide reforms.   

This fact sheet from the Commission details the growth in California's female prison population over the last two decades, as well as interesting statistics about male and female offenders.  And this press release provides both background and context for the report.  Here are some highlights from the press release:

The State could save money, improve public safety and break the cycle of crime if it reformed the way it incarcerates women offenders and supervises them on parole, the Little Hoover Commission concluded Wednesday....

Most female felons were victims before they were offenders, most are single parents, and most were convicted of non-violent, drug or property crimes. The Commission urged the State to develop a new strategy for women offenders that relies less on large and remote prisons designed to incapacitate violent offenders and more on community correctional facilities that can better reconnect paroling women to jobs, housing, emotional supports and their families....

In this report, the Commission challenged the State to be smart on crime — not just tough on crime — and to start with women offenders.  "Fixing the system for women parolees also can be a good test of the correctional system’s desire and capacity to improve.  Lessons learned improving outcomes for women can inspire and guide the management of the critically necessary larger reforms," Commission Chairman Michael E. Alpert said.

December 19, 2004 at 07:01 PM | Permalink


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my opinion on this topic is that if a female or male person should happen to get in trouble or caught with a controlled substance of any type of illegal drugs or paraphanelia for the first time or maybe even their second time deserves a chance to clean themselves up or get themselves back on track,not only for themselves but for their family and their children,i know firsthand how embarrasing when your asked about your parents and dont no whether to lie or tell everybody the truth that our mother or father is incarcerated for using or caring illegal drugs its a great big putdown especially when we know its not our fault but the system punishes all of us. its not fair not fair at all,especailly when you used to getting all A's in school so we see it as the society dont care about us like the way it portrays to on tv, speeches,etc. behind closed doors totally different stories. truth hurts!but for those with rap sheets from juvenile to adult or in trouble at school everyday just to act tough or impress themselves until they are kicked out of school and end up in the system because they think been incarcerated instead of having a high school diploma is the right thing to do then we cannot say nomore they pretty much made up their minds,the way i see it if god can forgive everyone or give second chances to each and everyone of us instead of sending us to hell when in reallity we all deserve to but he believes we all can be good again! why cant the system do the same,the way i see it if we could use gods holy bible in court to tell the truth why cant we give people a second chance to do right because "ONLY GOD CAN JUDGE US" not a jury of regular people like you and i especailly not just one man sitting behind a desk with a wooden mellet.thats just my oppinion!

Posted by: jimmy | Mar 28, 2005 11:53:57 AM

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