Upcoming Event: Oklahoma Women’s Coalition hosts forum on female incarceration

OWC logo FIN 4:COklahoma has the highest rate of incarcerated females in the nation – with a rate almost double the national rate. The Oklahoma Women’s Coalition is hosting a forum to explore the issue and possible solutions. The event is free and open to the public, and it will be held Wednesday, October 9, 11:30 – 1:00 p.m. at the United Way of Central Oklahoma (1444 NW 28th Street, OKC). Attendees can bring their lunch, if desired.

Featured speakers include Dr. Susan Sharp, the David Ross Boyd Presidential Professor at University of Oklahoma, and Yousef Khanfar, an award-winning author and photographer who has interviewed and photographed hundreds of female inmates in Oklahoma.  In addition, Gwen Fields will lead a panel discussion among females who’ve experienced incarceration and re-entry or alternative diversionary programs. Fields is the Executive Director of the Advocacy Council and the Activist in Residence at the OU Women’s and Gender Studies Center for Social Justice.

“The vast majority of women in Oklahoma prisons are there for nonviolent offenses. We must work together to find alternatives to imprisonment, alternatives that will keep families together and break the cycle of incarceration,” said Terri Woodland, a member of the Oklahoma Women’s Coalition board of directors. Woodland said children with an incarcerated parent are five times more likely to be imprisoned some time during their life. The Coalition hopes that as people learn about the incarceration issue they will work with state policy-makers to find solutions.

Please call the Oklahoma Women’s Coalition at 405-286-0356 to RSVP.


Gene Perry worked for OK Policy from 2011 to 2019. He is a native Oklahoman and a citizen of the Cherokee Nation. He graduated from the University of Oklahoma with a B.A. in history and an M.A. in journalism.

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