Wednesday, July 16, 2008
My daughter who's a social worker an on some occasions has to appear in court with some of her clients. She talks about how the judge determine their eligibility for custody of their children. Most of them are young Black Women. She mention how some women come in handcuffed to other women dressed in prison uniforms and it's a sad thing too see. During my growing up years I didn't no of any girl or woman in prison. And if they went to prison it was because of other than drugs. It's so different today. According to a recent Justice Department report on America's jail population, women make up about 10 percent of the America's inmates. There are now more women than ever serving time, and black women make up a disproportionate number of those women. Then there's the poverty and racial stereotyping. More than one out of three black women jailed did not complete high school, were unemployed, or had incomes below the poverty level at the time of their arrest. More than half of them are single parents. While black men are typed as violent, drug dealing "gangstas," black women are typed as sexually loose, conniving, untrustworthy, welfare queens. Many of the mostly middle-class judges and jurors believe that black women offenders are menaces to society too. The leap in black women behind bars has had devastating impact on families and the quality of life in many poor black communities. Thousands of children of incarcerated women are raised by grandparents, or warehoused in foster homes and institutions. The children are frequently denied visits because the mothers are deemed unfit. This prevents mothers from developing parenting and nurturing skills and deeply disrupts the parent-child bond. Many children of imprisoned women drift into delinquency, gangs and drug use. This help the vicious cycle of poverty, crime and violence. There are many cases where parents and even grandparents are jailed.