This week’s prison strike is the tactic of a growing movement that promises to tackle the systemic violence touching countless women’s lives.
While new legislation in New York City would, on paper, guarantee that women be provided with a reasonable amount of menstrual supplies upon request in public spaces, ensuring the enforced distribution of supplies in practice at correctional facilities will likely remain a challenge.
October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month. The Ms. Blog will be publishing a series of posts detailing the impact of domestic violence, including personal essays and more, throughout the month. In 2011, I was released from prison after serving more than two decades―I am finally free! However, freedom isn’t free. Every day, in small ways, I am […]
Imagine being pregnant and hungry. Always hungry. Now imagine being hungry and locked in a room, unable to access food, for eight to 12 hours. Imagine opening a carton of milk and being hit in the face with a rancid smell that makes your stomach turn. Now imagine that that is the only carton of […]
Domestic abuse survivor Tondalo Hall has spent the last decade behind bars in a McLoud, Oklahoma prison for “failing to protect” her children from a violent partner. Robert Braxton, Jr. was arrested in 2004 for breaking the ribs and femur of the couple’s daughter, who was 3 months old at the time. He was sentenced to 10 […]
When I heard that Piper Kerman wrote the book Orange is the New Black about her experience at the Danbury, Connecticut federal prison camp, I was excited. I served part of my 15-year sentence with her and I found the book an accurate snapshot of Danbury FPC. (Full disclosure: I am “Esposito” in Piper’s book.) […]
Kenlissia Jones did what many women before her have done. Facing a pregnancy she could not or did not want to continue, Jones, a 23-year-old black woman from Georgia, went online in search of a solution. There, she purchased Cytotec, a prescription abortion-inducing pill, from a pharmaceutical company in Canada. She delivered a five and […]
Black Women’s Histories, a conversation series profiling different feminist scholars engaging black women’s histories and narratives during Black and Women’s History Months (February and March, respectively), concludes with Talitha L. LeFlouria, author of the forthcoming Chained in Silence: Black Women and Convict Labor in the New South, due out next month. LeFlouria is assistant professor […]
Imagine how the billions being spent by the U.S. on the never-ending imprisonment and proceedings against alleged 9/11 terrorists could be used to support health care and other social services in the U.S.—a first-hand report on what’s happening in Cuba. After spending a week at Guantánamo Bay Naval Base (GTMO, or Gitmo) serving as an […]
In 2009, filmmaker PJ Starr received an email from a friend bringing news of the horrific and unnecessary death of Marcia Powell. Powell had been serving a 27-month sentence for solicitation of prostitution. While in Perryville Prison outside of Phoenix, corrections officers left her out in a metal cage for four hours in searing heat. As a […]