The criminal justice system can interrupt the reproductive lives of poor women of color and poor white women in many different ways; separate them from their offspring and their loved ones; and tear these women and their communities asunder. These interruptions are acts of violence in opposition to any standard of reproductive justice. The fact is, assaults on sources of community support for women of color when they come out of jail, on their reproductive processes and their child rearing, are orchestrated by institutional systems such as welfare-to-work mandates, social services, child protective services, the schools, hospitals, battered women's shelters, and the structure of child care itself. State policies and social practices compound these violent assaults or interruptions. The Broome County Jail Project follows former women prisoners, with the goal of determining the full range of assaults on women's reproductive and maternal lives, spearheaded by the foster care, educational, and juvenile justice systems.
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