[Skip to Content]
Access to paid content on this site is currently suspended due to excessive activity being detected from your IP address 23.23.50.247. Please contact the publisher to request reinstatement.
[Skip to Content Landing]
Article
April 1983

Mentally Ill Women in a County Jail

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Psychiatry, University of Southern California, School of Medicine, Los Angeles.

Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1983;40(4):363-368. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.1983.01790040017002
Abstract

• We studied 101 inmates of a county jail for women who were randomly selected from those referred for psychiatric evaluation. Eighty-six percent had a history of psychiatric hospitalization; 94% had prior arrest records, 50% of these for felonies. More than half met the criteria for involuntary hospitalization. When arrested more than 40% were transients, and only 7% were employed. Seventy percent had histories of serious physical violence, more than 40% had engaged in prostitution, and 84% of those with children had demonstrated an inability to take care of them. Far fewer mentally ill women than men were incarcerated in county jail. As in our study of male inmates, there appeared to have been some "criminalization" of the mentally ill. There is a need for more mandatory aftercare and ongoing involuntary treatment for this population.

×