Giving birth, in chains

NPR has set the feminist blogosphere a-chattin with an investigative piece on pregnant incarcerated women. Their alarming report show that many of these women give birth while handcuffed to the bed, or while their feet are shackled together.

NPR says that many prisons are not accommodating the needs of pregnant women or just women in general, even though the female prison population has grown eightfold since 1977.

This brings up several questions, two which are: How the hell is a woman supposed to give birth with her ankles tied together? And why has the female prison population grown so much in the past forty years? It seems to me that not only should prisons accommodate their increasing female populations’ basic needs, but we should also wonder why there are so many more women going to prison in the first place.

But what do you think? Read/listen to the story here.

–by Tara Cavanaugh