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July 30 2019

Kim Kardashian West’s Prison Visit Draws More Attention to Women Behind Bars

by Patrice Lee Onwuka

Kim Kardashian West was recently spotted in Washington, D.C. She wasn’t marching to 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue to plead with President Trump for the release of an inmate -- which she has successfully done before. 

This time, she visited a correctional facility for women with a camera crew in tow. The celebrity-turned-legal apprentice/justice warrior is reportedly filming a documentary on women in the justice system.

Kardashian West may be serious about getting her hands dirty with the issue and it comes at a great time.

Following the passage of the First Step Act, which was promoted and signed into law last December by President Trump, and recent efforts to provide former inmates with a second chance at opportunity through training and job programs, there is bipartisan momentum to push forward with reforms to our criminal justice system.

This does not mean being soft on crime and allowing violent or dangerous people to roam our streets. Rather, reforms call for more alternatives to sentencing as well as educational and training programs that can reduce recidivism among many other reforms.

Women serving prison time have unique health and wellness unique needs to be addressed and the First Step Act addressed several of those including requiring that sanitary pads are provided to female inmates for free and ending the shackling pregnant women. 

Recently, I provided testimony during a U.S. House of Representatives Judiciary Committee meeting on Women and Girls in the Criminal Justice System that laid out some of those needs of women and the on-going work to be done. (Read my written testimony or watch the hearing here.)

Women should serve time with dignity and the government should remove the barriers to their opportunity after release. Watch this video to learn about bipartisan solutions that can help.





Independent Women's Forum is an educational 501(c)(3) dedicated to developing and advancing policies that aren’t just well intended, but actually enhance people’s freedom, choices, and opportunities. IWF is the sister organization of the Independent Women’s Voice.​
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