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House of Representatives
Session of 2017 - 2018 Regular Session


Posted: March 12, 2018 09:36 AM
From: Representative Morgan Cephas
To: All House members
Subject: Resolution – Recognizing the Growth of the Female Prison Population
In the near future, I intend to introduce a resolution that calls attention to Pennsylvania’s rising female prison population and the lasting impacts such incarceration has on families and communities.

The number of women in state prisons grew twice as fast as the overall adult prison population from 2000 to 2017, jumping 74 percent compared to an overall increase of 36 percent. Female offenders, who are housed at SCI-Muncy and SCI-Cambridge Springs, now total more than 2,600. A similar trend is playing out nationally where female incarceration has been rising for more than 30 years.

My resolution recognizes that the vast majority – 82 percent – of incarcerated women nationally are in prison for nonviolent offenses, including 32 percent who are serving time for property crimes. Moreover, approximately 80 percent of women behind bars are mothers. Research has shown that incarcerating female heads of household can lead to irreparable setbacks for her children and have lasting impacts on communities. For these reasons, I ask that you join me in sponsoring this important resolution.

Introduced as HR980