Mothers in the margin – women with a history of substance abuse and imprisonment
There is typically a smaller proportion of women than men among prisoners and patients treated for substance abuse. Many studies have excluded women from their analysis because of the small number of women or have analyzed both genders together. The aim of the current paper was to use quantitative and qualitative methods to study the life course of addicted women who were imprisoned or participated in community service.
Conference report of the 54th Research Seminar of the Scandinavian Research Council for Criminology
The aim of the current paper was to study the life course of addicted women who had been imprisoned or participated in community service (n = 254) using the data of a large register study, the Registry-based follow-up study on criminality, health and taxation of inpatients and outpatients entered into substance abuse treatment (RIPE).
The proportion of women with a history of imprisonment was small, even among substance-abusing women, compared to men. Most of the substance-abusing women with a history of imprisonment showed some signs of marginalization: low incomes and education levels, homelessness, mental problems and unemployment were common, and the rate of recent criminality was high. The women had faced multiple problems during their lives that is important to consider when planning treatment for women and their children.
Keywords: life course, substance abuse treatment, criminality, imprisonment, criminology, RIPE