While looking over the Women and Prisons site, I came across a couple of articles that made me curious. The first was about illegal strip-searches. As an Illinoisan, I know that Chicago cops have a reputation for being crooked, but the fact that there were over 3,000 women filing a case about this seems ridiculous. Adding to the injustice, the strip-searches were used as a form of humiliation and degradation, and most men were not strip-searched as much as women were. The excuse was that women have more orifices to conceal a weapon. The sheriff was male; had there been more female officers, would the illegal strip-searches still taken place?
The second article was about transgender individuals in prisons, specifically male to female (MTF) individuals. The amount of MTF's to be incarcerated within their lifetime is about two-thirds, dwarfing the African-American male incarceration statistic of one-fourth. This is because they have a hard time finding a job and are often pushed towards underground economy activities such as prostitution and drug-dealing. Also, MTF's are placed in male prisons with the general population, becoming targets of rape and molestation. With someone going in for larceny or some other non-violent offense, he/she may leave HIV-positive.