Criminalizing Trauma: On Childhood Sexual Abuse and Incarceration of Girls

The hands of what appears to be a young girl in handcuffs Steven Depolo/Flickr CC-BY-3.0:

Vera Institute’s Initiative to End Girls’ Incarceration explains the link between childhood sexual abuse and incarceration of girls, LGBQ/TGNC youth.

“Childhood trauma and sexual violence are not only a key part of girls’ experiences before and during their justice involvement, they are also a direct pathway leading girls and LGBQ/TGNC youth into the justice system. Prevention and early intervention are critical, because understanding and attending to the link between childhood trauma and justice involvement can disrupt the pipeline to the justice system. One promising model, called an ‘advocacy-approach,’ builds on work developed in the context of victim services for survivors of domestic and sexual violence.”