Report Title:

Female Parity; Corrections

Description:

Requires that the range and quality of programming offered to women in corrections be substantially equivalent to the range and quality of programs offered to males. Requires office of youth services to develop and implement gender-responsive community-based programs for adjudicated females. Appropriates $ .

THE SENATE

S.B. NO.

877

TWENTY-SECOND LEGISLATURE, 2003

 

STATE OF HAWAII

 


 

A BILL FOR AN ACT

 

relating to corrections.

 

BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF HAWAII:

SECTION 1. In recent years, the number of incarcerated women has increased at an alarming rate. Nationally, women are six per cent of the prison population. In Hawaii, however, women are eleven per cent of the prison population. While the male prison population doubled between 1985 and 1995, the female population tripled, largely due to harsh sentencing that incarcerates female nonviolent first-time drug offenders.

Research establishes that women inmates have different needs from male inmates, resulting in part from female offenders' disproportionate victimization from sexual or physical abuse and their responsibility for children. Women offenders are more likely than male offenders to be addicted to drugs, have a mental illness, and have been unemployed before incarceration.

Research establishes that the majority of women in prison are nonviolent and could be serving their time in community-based gender-responsive programs.

Research also indicates that correctional strategies that are gender-responsive and community-based are needed to give offenders the life skills they need to get out of the criminal justice system and to make positive healthy choices for themselves and their families.

Offenders need gender-responsive services that address substance abuse, family relationships, vocational education, work, prior victimization, and domestic violence. They also need transitional housing and aftercare services to help them adjust to living in the community and reuniting with their children and families.

For children, the most devastating effect of incarceration is the loss of contact with their primary caregiver. Half of these children never visit their primary caregiver in prison and the other half visit infrequently, with geographical proximity being the biggest barrier to visitation.

Because regular visits are the best indicator of a family's successful reunification after release, it is critical that gender-responsive community-based programs for offenders be close to children and family. Many of Hawaii's inmates are incarcerated outside of Hawaii, making visitation with family and children impossible or very difficult. Other problems associated with women offenders in Hawaii include:

(1) A lack of female correctional officers;

(2) Under-service by the therapeutic community; drug courts being available only on Oahu and Maui;

(3) The decreasing availability of rehabilitation programs; and

(4) A paucity of gender-responsive community-based programs.

The legislature recognizes that the needs of incarcerated women are different from the needs of incarcerated men and require approaches tailored to their specific characteristics and situations.

According to a draft report by Myrna Raeder of Southwestern University School of Law, in the last fifteen years two key developments have emerged that have a combined legal effect of enabling innovation in the area of gender responsive corrections policies. The first of these developments, Turner v. Safley, 482 U.S. 78, 89 (1987) found that "subjecting the day-to-day judgments of prison officials to an inflexible strict scrutiny analysis would seriously hamper their ability to anticipate security problems and to adopt innovative solutions to the intractable problems of prison administration." The Court recently reaffirmed the use of the Turner standard in Shaw v. Murphy, 532 U.S. 223 (2001). As a result, courts do not second-guess prison administrators or require them to justify why they did not adopt other alternatives. The second development was the enactment of the Prison Litigation Reform Act by Congress. The Act, which governs all civil litigation in federal or state courts, limits the amount of relief a court may grant or approve, limits attorneys' fees, requires prisoners to exhaust their administrative remedies before they can sue, and requires prisoners to pay a filing fee.

The combined impact of these two developments has been to impede the efforts of prison reform advocates and individual prisoners that seek to engage in lawsuits. Conversely, however, it also facilitates the introduction of innovative programs designed to aid rehabilitation and provides great leeway to experiment with creative approaches in order to solve long-standing problems within our correctional facilities.

The purposes of this Act are to:

(1) Require that adult women charged with or convicted of crimes and juvenile females adjudicated for offenses that would be crimes if committed by an adult or who are adjudicated delinquents, are provided the range and quality of programming substantially equivalent to the range and quality of programming offered to males similarly situated; and

(2) Appropriate funds to immediately provide additional gender-responsive community-based program beds for community status female offenders and for female adjudicated youths classified by the office of youth services as minimum control.

SECTION 2. The Hawaii Revised Statutes is amended by adding a new chapter to be appropriately designated and to read as follows:

"CHAPTER

PARITY FOR FEMALE OFFENDERS

-l Female prisoners; parity programs. Adult women charged with or convicted of crimes and juvenile females adjudicated for offenses that would be crimes if committed by an adult or who are adjudicated delinquents shall be provided a range and quality of programming substantially equivalent to the range and quality of programming offered to male persons similarly situated. Programs for female offenders shall be based upon the psychosocial developmental needs of female offenders.

-2 Model programs. Within the limits of money appropriated by the legislature specifically for the purpose, the director of public safety shall provide model gender-responsive programs for female offenders that respond to statewide needs and geographical areas and shall award grants for the programs. Listed in the order of importance, the programs shall:

(1) Respond in a rehabilitative way to the type of offenses female offenders generally commit, addressing pathways to crime;

(2) Respond to the problems of female offenders with dependent children;

(3) Respond to the importance of developing self-determination through independent living and marketable job skills;

(4) Assist female offenders to overcome their own extreme degree of dependency, learning strong and healthy relationships without losing self-esteem; and

(5) Offer technical assistance and training toward the implementation of other similar programs.

-3 Grants-in-aid. To encourage cooperation and assist private agencies that have existing programs for female offenders, and to encourage private agencies to develop and implement new programs, the director of public safety shall make grants-in-aid to private agencies electing to participate in the grant program.

-4 Agency programs; proportionate costs. Where several private agencies combine to provide one or more of the programs under this chapter, the cost of each program shall be borne proportionately by the participating agencies on the basis of need or use as determined by rules adopted by the director of public safety pursuant to chapter 91.

-5 Duties of the director of public safety. The director of public safety shall:

(1) Review all plans for programs for female offenders;

(2) Review grant-in-aid applications or proposals for model programs and award grants for programs;

(3) Monitor the delivery of services provided under grant-in-aid programs for female offenders;

(4) Establish, by rule, a method of determining the amount or percentage of local contribution to receive a grant-in-aid under this chapter; and

(5) Collaborate with the Community Advisory Board for Female Offenders as a resource on women's issues for the department.

-6 Juvenile female offenders. The office of youth services shall collaborate with the departments of human services, health, labor and industrial relations, and education, as well as with representatives of the private sector, to develop a comprehensive continuum of care to address the gender-responsive needs of juvenile female offenders.

-7 Annual report. The department of public safety and the office of youth services shall annually submit a report to the legislature not later than twenty days before the convening of the regular session on the provision of: program descriptions, type and costs of grants made, name of the private agency awarded each grant, success of each grant in meeting program specifications, and other relevant information concerning gender responsive programs for female offenders. The first report shall be submitted not later than twenty days before the convening of the regular session of 2004."

SECTION 3. Chapter 352, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended by adding a new section to be appropriately designated and to read as follows:

"352- Gender-responsive community-based programs for female adjudicated youths. Within the limits of the appropriation made specifically for the purpose, the office of youth services shall make gender-responsive community-based programs available for female adjudicated youths by providing female adjudicated youths the appropriate range of opportunities to ensure that their needs are met. Program models designed to address the needs of female adjudicated youths shall include:

(1) Appropriate treatment, including substance abuse treatment;

(2) Individualized case management to help female juvenile offenders set and achieve goals;

(3) Life skills development workshops, including budgeting, money management, nutrition, and exercise;

(4) Family-focused programming, including issues of pregnancy and single parenting;

(5) Peer support and the development of peer networks;

(6) Highly skilled staff experienced in working with female adjudicated youths and their concerns;

(7) Formal recognition of participant achievement;

(8) Ongoing attention to building community-based support;

(9) Assistance for those female juvenile adjudicated youths who need to develop a marketable job skill and a career plan;

(10) Geographical proximity to children and family;

(11) Preparation of female adjudicated youths for the resumption of their education; and

(12) The goal of providing a gender-responsive continuum of care."

SECTION 4. Chapter 353, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended by adding a new section to be appropriately designated and to read as follows:

"353- Gender-responsive community-based programs for women. Within the limits of the appropriation made specifically for the purpose, the department of public safety shall make gender-responsive community-based programs available for women offenders by providing women offenders the appropriate range of opportunities to ensure that their needs are met. Program models designed to address women's needs shall include:

(1) Appropriate treatment, including substance abuse treatment;

(2) Individualized case management to help women offenders set and achieve goals;

(3) Life skills development workshops, including budgeting, money management, nutrition, and exercise;

(4) Family-focused programming, including issues of pregnancy and single parenting;

(5) Peer support and the development of peer networks;

(6) Highly skilled staff experienced in working with women and their concerns;

(7) Formal recognition of participant achievement;

(8) Ongoing attention to building community-based support;

(9) Assistance for those offenders who need to develop a marketable job skill and a career plan;

(10) Geographical proximity to children and family; and

(11) The goal of providing a gender-responsive continuum of care."

SECTION 5. There is appropriated out of the general revenues of the State of Hawaii the sum of $2,000,000, or so much thereof as may be necessary for fiscal year 2003-2004, and the same sum, or so much thereof as may be necessary for fiscal year 2004-2005, for gender-responsive community-based programs for women. The sums appropriated shall be expended by the department of public safety for the purposes of this Act.

SECTION 6. There is appropriated out of the general revenues of the State of Hawaii the sum of $ , or so much thereof as may be necessary for fiscal year 2003-2004, and the same sum, or so much thereof as may be necessary for fiscal year 2004-2005, for gender-responsive community-based programs for female adjudicated youths. The sums appropriated shall be expended by the office of youth services for the purposes of this Act.

SECTION 7. New statutory material is underscored.

SECTION 8. This Act shall take effect on July 1, 2003.

INTRODUCED BY:

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