Document Type



With the rates of female incarcerations on the rise, it is important that we examine programs available to female offenders in prison, and programs available to female offenders as they exit prison and re-enter society. Programs developed specifically for these females to fit their needs are important in their rehabilitation progress and should help in keeping their recidivism rates low. I expect to find a disconnect between the needs of female offenders and the programs meant to serve and rehabilitate them. I also expect the review of literature to support that a majority of female offenders have histories of victimization across their lifetime, creating a negative impact on their well-being and possibly creating a pathway to criminality. In my research, I expect to find that the lack of in prison programs and resources for female inmates will play a significant role in determining whether or not the female inmate will have a successful re-entry into the community, due to lack of support for their gender specific needs. This study will examine whether or not these prison based programs are benefitting these female offenders who likely suffer from mental illness, PTSD and are facing substance abuse issues. I hope that it will be able to help reform the classification of incarcerated females in Massachusetts, and possibly lead to reform in mental health and rehabilitative programs in the Massachusetts Department of Corrections.


Criminal Justice

Thesis Comittee

Jennifer Hartsfield (Thesis Director)

Richard Wright

Jo-Ann Della-Giustina

Copyright and Permissions

Original document was submitted as an Honors Program requirement. Copyright is held by the author.