Impact Ethics

Events, By Category and Date:

» Go to news main

Women Prisoners and the Right to Health Care

Posted by nte on November 19, 2018 in Cafes
Photo credit: Françoise Baylis
Photo credit: Françoise Baylis

Café Scientifique
Mon. 19 November 2018 (7:00PM-8:45PM)
The Nook2118 Gottingen St, Halifax
Come early. Seating is limited. No reservations.
Complimentary coffee, tea and cookies.
Join the Facebook posting for this event & invite your friends.

Download the event poster.

The population of women in prisons in Canada is steadily rising. Women prisoners arrive with complex health histories including trauma, mental illness, addiction and chronic disease. Can prisons possibly meet the health needs of women? How do health services conflict with the purpose of prisons - to punish and control? We will discuss the health needs of this population, the duties of health care providers to this population, and wrestle with the challenge of placing the public services of incarceration and health services under one roof.

Martha Paynter is a Registered Nurse practicing in maternal-newborn health. She is founder and Chair of Women’s Wellness Within, a non-profit organization that provides support, education and advocacy regarding reproductive justice and the health of criminalized women in pregnancy and postpartum. Her work regarding the rights of incarcerated women to breastfeed is published in the Journal of Human Lactation. As a doctoral candidate in the Dalhousie University School of Nursing, her research examines the maternal health outcomes of criminalized women. She is also engaged in advocacy and research work regarding access to human milk and medical abortion in Atlantic Canada. Twitter: @marthpaynter 

  • Recommended Readings
    Kilty, J. (2012). ‘It’s like they don’t want you to get better’: Psy control of women in the carceral context. Feminism & Psychology, 22(2), 162-182.
  • Kim, M. (2018). From carceral feminism to transformative justice: Women-of-color feminism and alternatives to incarceration. Journal of Ethnic & Cultural Diversity in Social Work, 27(3), 219-233.
  • Miller, K. (2017). Canada's Mother-Child Program and incarcerated Aboriginal mothers: How and why the program is inaccessible to Aboriginal female offenders. Canadian Family Law Quarterly, 37(1), 1-23.
  • Paynter, M. (2018) Policy and Legal Protection for Breastfeeding and Incarcerated Women in Canada. Journal of Human Lactation. 34(2).
  • Paynter, M., & Snelgrove-Clarke, E. (2017). Breastfeeding support for criminalized women in Canada. Journal of Human Lactation33(4), 672-676. DOI:10.1177/0890334417726057
  • Pollack, S. (2009). “You can't have it both ways”: Punishment and treatment of imprisoned women. Journal of Progressive Human Services, 20(2), 112-128.