Prison Rape Elimination Act

The Prison Rape Elimination Act (PREA) of 2003 was enacted by the U.S. Congress to protect incarcerated individuals from sexually abusive behavior from both other inmates and from staff. Prior to that time, the general public often considered sexual abuse in prison an inevitability of incarceration. Television shows and feature films depict this type of violence as a common occurrence. With over 6.6 million individuals under the supervision of the U.S. adult correctional systems in 2016 (jails, prisons, lockups, community corrections, and probation), the number of victims of sexually abusive behavior could be astronomical if the prevalence of abuse matched societal expectations of prison life. PREA required the creation of a national commission to study the causes and consequences of sexual abuse in confinement. ...

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