Prison Rape Elemination Act

Topics: Prison, Rape, Prison rape Pages: 3 (939 words) Published: July 28, 2013
Prison Rape in Texas: Analyzing PREA

Prison Rape in Texas: Analyzing PREA
In 2003, the Bush Administration signed the Prison Rape Elimination Act (PREA, P.L. 108-79), the purpose of which is to address the increasing problem of sexual abuse within U.S. correctional facilities. The Act is applicable to all public and private institutions as well as community-based agencies housing adults or juveniles. In accordance with PREA protections, the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) has recently released national standards; under this Act, the Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS) is expected to conduct a comprehensive annual assessment and statistical review of the incidence and effects of prison rape (DOJ, 2012). Research by the BJS as well as external sources reveals that the Texas Department of Criminal Justice (TDCJ) has emerged as the national leader in prison rape violence, with Texas facilities accounting for five of the top ten U.S. prisons with the highest prevalence rates of inmate-reported sexual assault, including the top two worst rankings: the Estelle Unit and the Clements unit (Simons & Gavin, 2012). TDJC operates the country’s third largest prison system with over 150,000 prisons, with annual rape incident reports numbering between 500 and 600 reports, with 86% of these occurring in large male facilities (Austin et al., 2006).

The proposed research analysis will examine the problem of inmate and guard rape within Texas, emphasizing the W. J. “Jim” Estelle Unit, located in Huntsville, Texas. The facility has a maximum capacity of 3,148 inmates and employs 762 security personnel. The Estelle Unit had a 15.7% sexual abuse rate according to the BJS number; one of the biggest myths is that sexual violence is an unavoidable part of the prison lifestyle (Kaiser & Stannow, 2010). Policies and practices can be implemented to prevent, deter, and treat victims of prison sexual violence; however, the scope of this issue is...

References: Austin, J., Fabelo, T., Gunter, A., & McGinnis, K. (2006, March). Sexual violence In the Texas prison system. Washington, DC: National Institute of Justice.
Kaiser, D., & Stannow, L. (2010, February 10). The Rape of American Prisoners. The New York Review of Books. Retrieved from http://www.nybooks.com/articles/archives/2010/mar/11/the-rape-of-american- prisoners/?pagination=false
Kaiser, D., & Stannow, L. (2010, February 25). The Way to Stop Prison Rape. The New York Review of Books. Retrieved from http://www.nybooks.com/articles/archives/2010/mar/25/the-way-to-stop-prison- rape/?pagination=false
Medlock, S., & Cole, E. (2010, May 22). Prison rape serious problem for Texas. Texas Civil Rights Project. Retrieved from www.texascivilrightsproject.org/?p=2136
PREA data collection activities, 2012. (2012, June 1). Bureau of Justice Statistics. Retrieved from bjs.ojp.usdoj.gov/content/pub/pdf/pdca12.pdf
Simmons, M., & Gavin, R. (2010, April 5). Texas leads nation in prison sex abuse. Houston Chronicle. Retrieved from www.chron.com/news/houston-texas/article/Texas-leads- nation-in-prison-sex-abuse-1708170.php
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