Rauner Signs Law To Help Women Behind Bars

 
Prison bars.

Gov. Bruce Rauner has signed legislation to create a women-specific division within the Department of Corrections.

Michael Coghlan/Flickr/(CC BY-SA 2.0)

Flanked by inmates at the all-female Logan Correctional Center in Lincoln, Gov. Bruce Rauner signed legislation to create a women-specific division within the Department of Corrections. 

It’s part of an effort to address what he calls “fundamentally different” needs of women behind bars.

“Women respond differently to incarceration than men do. Women have different issues,” he said.

Public Safety Officer Carolyn Gurski says the big difference is that women, more often than men, are victims before they become inmates.

“Many of the women have been traumatized by physical, sexual and emotional abuse, and that’s something that we need to help them work through,” Gurski said. “We believe in treating the women and treating the issues and challenges that they come to prison with.”

The new women’s division is intended to help make sure programs and services for women inmates, and training for prison employees, are gender-specific. It begins work in June. 

Story source: Illinois Public Radio