U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government, Department of Justice.

NCJRS Virtual Library

The Virtual Library houses over 235,000 criminal justice resources, including all known OJP works.
Click here to search the NCJRS Virtual Library

Principles for the Treatment of Women Sentenced to Imprisonment: A National Report from Sweden

NCJ Number
Date Published
34 pages
This report describes a model program developed in Sweden in 1998 which established guidelines for treatment of women in prison and is overseen by a nationwide consultative network composed of women from prisons and therapeutic communities to assure that gender perspective are applied to the needs of women offenders.
This report contains a summary of the eight principles that underline the development of this model program, one of which, for example, says that women's needs and issues should be addressed in a woman-focused environment that is safe, trusting, and supportive. An introduction reviews the history of development of this program for women in prison. Statistics on women sentenced to imprisonment are given, with tables of female and male receptions for 1975-1998; types of offenses for males and females, respectively; length of sentence for males and females, respectively; and drug misuse for males and females, respectively. Discussion areas include the issues of mixed prisons versus prisons for women only, apartments used as visiting rooms for the children of the prisoners, and pregnancy and babies up to the age of 12 months in prison. Structured program activities that are recommended include, for example, work and education training, parenthood training, and developing an independent life without criminality as a component. The section on staff competence includes, as an example, a requirement for sensitivity training concerning women as victims of sexual, mental and physical violence. A discussion of how best to collaborate with other professionals concludes this report. Appendices include information on the task of the present project group, and know-how and requirements for the Swedish Prison and Probation Service, 1997.