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Jailing is failing women. In Australia the vast majority of incarcerated women have themselves survived crime in the form gendered violence. This includes many women who have survived family and domestic violence.

Women’s incarceration both reflects and entrenches social and gendered disadvantage. Although women are a minority population in Australian prisons (only 8% of people in prison are women), the rate of women’s incarceration has been growing faster than men’s incarceration over the last decade.

For many women, incarceration involves separation from children for extended periods, sometimes permanently. 54% of women in prison have dependent children. For women in prison who are separated from their children it can be extremely difficult for them to maintain a connection with their children from prison and regain care of their children following release. This has devasting impacts for both women and children