Journal of the American Academy of Psychiatry and the Law

The Realities of Pregnancy and Mothering While Incarcerated

The United States has the second highest rate of incarcerating women internationally, second only to Thailand. In recent decades, there has been a dramatic increase in the U.S. correctional population, and women are a rapidly growing segment of this population. In the United States, 64.6 women per 100,000 are incarcerated, with the highest rate of 142 per 100,000 occurring in Oklahoma.4 Most women who are incarcerated are within their reproductive years, and many women are pregnant at reception.