Are we disappearing African American women through mass incarceration? It depends on the day

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
LaKresha Kenyatta Brown (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
Web Site:
Shelly Brown-Jeffy

Abstract: While much discussion surrounding mass incarceration focuses on African American men, African American women, too, are incarcerated at higher rates than their female counterparts – European American women. The number of incarcerated women dramatically increased during the War on Drugs era. The Bureau of Justice Statistics (2017) reports that in 2016, the imprisonment rate for African American women (96 per 100,000) was almost twice the rate of imprisonment for European American women (49 per 100,000). This paper examines both legal and extralegal factors that could possibly influence sentencing decisions made by judges. This study seeks to examine whether the race of a woman matters in the state of North Carolina when her most recent offense is drug related. I collected data from the North Carolina Department of Public Safety on women who were incarcerated in the state of North Carolina on October 12, 2017. I analyzed data from 320 women whose most recent offense was drug related. I found that African American women were not disproportionately incarcerated compared to European American women. In sum, race did not matter for the state of North Carolina, but other legally relevant factors did.

Additional Information

Language: English
Date: 2018
African American, Incarceration, North Carolina, Women
African American prisoners $z North Carolina
African American Women
Race discrimination
Sex discrimination

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