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Clean Slate for Women

NCJ Number
Corrections Forum Volume: 11 Issue: 4 Dated: July/August 2002 Pages: 52-54
Jeff Goodale; Missy Stutler; Donna Klein-Acosta
Date Published
July 2002
3 pages
This article describes the design of a new Illinois prison that has been attentive to the special needs of women inmates.
Now in the design development phase, Hopkins Park will open in 2004 and be the first new facility for women built in Illinois since 1927. The design will span approximately 400,000 square feet and provide 1,200 medium-security beds, 300 reception-classification beds, 18 medical beds and 60 mental health beds, 90 segregation beds, 20 protective custody beds, and 8 condemned unit beds. Hopkins Parks has been designed as a campus, with most of the facility's buildings surrounding a central quadrangle. Fencing connects the few gaps between the buildings. Criss-crossing sidewalks running across the campus provide points for interaction that allow passing inmates to stop and chat with friends. The campus design requires inmates to move about for recreation and services. Female inmates enter the Illinois correctional system through the reception and classification wing of the facility, where they will undergo medical and psychiatric screening. The medical facility will accommodate the needs of pregnant women. The visitors' center features a design tailored to women's needs. The main visitation area offers separate alcoves for children and for mothers with young children. An outdoor visiting area will have play equipment oriented so the children cannot see the prison buildings or yard. The leisure-time services building adjacent to the visitors' center has also been designed specifically for women. The facility will offer aerobic activities, light weights, and a gym floor for basketball, volleyball, and badminton. An arts and crafts area will be provided as well. A wide range of therapeutic programs will include drug rehabilitation, anger management, and services to address any victimization the women may have experienced. Educational services and opportunities will also focus on the social and employment needs of women. A figure illustrates the campus layout.