Report says that women’s prison conditions are tougher than those of men

Ullersmo PrisonUllersmo Prison. Photo: Norway Today Media

Female prisoners are locked more often in their cell than male prisoners. Some have no toilet in the cell, and there are several areas in need of higher security, according to a new report.

Female inmates in Norwegian prisons also have fewer activities than men. In addition, many women experience a real risk of sexual harassment, concluded the report from the Parliamentary Ombudsman, according to the newspaper, Dagbladet.

The report, based on visits to prisons in Norway, mostly since 2014, reaches a clear conclusion; in some areas of prison life, women are incarcerated under less favorable conditions than men.

‘Overall, we found a number of factors that put women prisoners in a worse situation than their male counterparts, a fact which is contrary to international norms in this area’, said Ombudsman, Aage Thor Falkanger.

There are 43 prisons in Norway. Four of these are women’s prisons. In women’s sections, however, in the so-called ‘combination prisons’ they share with men, the report points out that women experience a lot of unwanted attention.

In Drammen prison, a female inmate became pregnant last year.
Falkanger said that in general, sex can be used as a medium of exchange in prison; that where women and men are incarcerated together, it is important that measures are taken to counteract undesirable consequences.

He emphasized that Drammen prison have decided that they will no longer have female inmates.


Source: NTB scanpix / Norway Today