Pregnancy and Drinking among Women Offenders under Community Supervision in the United States: 2004–2008
- Hung-En Sung
- … show all 1 hide
Rent the article at a discountRent now
* Final gross prices may vary according to local VAT.Get Access
Drinking during pregnancy raises risks of pregnancy, labor, and delivery complications in mothers and lasting neurological or behavioral consequences in babies. This public health issue has recently attracted the attention of criminal justice (CJ) researchers, as the prevalence of Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASDs) appears to be unusually high among offender populations. Nevertheless, in addition to becoming a main caretaker of individuals with FASDs, the CJ system already may have under its care some of the women at the highest risk of drinking during pregnancy. This study sets out to determine the prevalence, patterns, and correlates of alcohol consumption among women offenders on probation or parole in the United States. Analysis of data collected from seven waves of the National Survey on Drug Use and Health (2004–2008) were performed on women who were under community supervision during the year prior to the survey interview. Results revealed that 1.9% of women of child-bearing ages of 12–44 years in the general population were pregnant, as compared to 4.7% of comparable women under community supervision. Pregnant offenders were more likely to come from minority groups and be socially disadvantaged than their non-CJ-involved counterparts. Alarmingly, they were nearly three times as likely to have engaged in problem drinking (e.g., two drinks a day for a month) than non-CJ-involved women. Negative behavioral consequences resulting from alcohol consumption and concurrent use of other substances were also significantly more pervasive among drinkers under community supervision. Effective prevention and control of the problem requires rethinking the role of corrections systems in health promotion. Concrete recommendations are discussed.
- Burd L, Selfridge RH, Klug MG, Bakko SA. Fetal alcohol syndrome in the United States corrections system. Addict Biol. 2004; 9(2): 169–176. CrossRef
- The National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse (CASA) at Columbia University. Behind Bars II: Substance Abuse and America’s Prison Population. New York, NY: CASA; 2010.
- Fast DK, Conry J. The challenge of fetal alcohol syndrome in the criminal legal system. Addict Biol. 2004; 9(2): 161–166. CrossRef
- Glaze LE, Bonczar TP. Probation and Parole in the United States, 2008 (NCJ 228230). Washington, D.C.: Bureau of Justice Statistics; 2009.
- Office of Applied Studies. Overview of Findings from the 2002 National Survey on Drug Use and Health (DHHS Publication No. SMA 03–3774). Rockville, MD: Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration; 2003.
- DeLisi M. Not just a boy’s club: an empirical assessment of female career criminals. Women Crim Justice. 2002; 13(4): 27–45. CrossRef
- Moffitt TE, Caspi A, Rutter M, Silva PA. Sex Differences in Antisocial Behaviour. New York, NY: Cambridge University Press; 2002.
- National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism. Alcohol: A Women’s Health Issue. Washington, D.C.: NIAAA; 2008.
- Ekblad S, Ekholm E, Huhtala M, et al. Maternal smoking during pregnancy and regional brain volumes in preterm infants. J Pediatr. 2010; 156(2): 185–190. CrossRef
- Hylkema MN, Blacquière MJ. Intrauterine effects of maternal smoking on sensitization, asthma, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Proc Am Thorac Soc. 2009; 6(8): 660–662. CrossRef
- Almario CV, Seligman NS, Dysart KC, Berghella V, Baxter JK. Risk factors for preterm birth among opiate-addicted gravid women in a methadone treatment program. Am J Obstet Gynecol. 2009; 201(3): 326.e1–e6. CrossRef
- Perreira KM, Cortes KE. Race/ethnicity and nativity differences in alcohol and tobacco use during pregnancy. Am J Public Health. 2006; 96(9): 1629–1636. CrossRef
- Griesler PC, Kandel DB. The impact of maternal drinking during and after pregnancy on the drinking of adolescent offspring. J Stud Alcohol. 1998; 59(3): 292–304.
- Hill SY, Lowers L, Locke-Wellman J, Shen SA. Maternal smoking and drinking during pregnancy and the risk for child and adolescent psychiatric disorders. J Stud Alcohol. 2000; 61: 661–668.
- Fuller BE, Chermack ST, Cruise KA, Kirsch E, Fitzgerald HE, Zucker RA. Predictors of aggression across three generations among sons of alcoholics: relationships involving grandparental and parental alcoholism, child aggression, marital aggression and parenting practices. J Stud Alcohol. 2003; 64(4): 472–483.
- Thornberry TP. Explaining multiple patterns of offending across the life course and across generations. Ann Am Acad Polit SS. 2005; 602: 156–195. CrossRef
- Streissguth AP, Barr H, Bookstein F, Sampson P, Bookstein F. Risk factors for adverse life outcomes in fetal alcohol syndrome and fetal alcohol effects. Dev Behav Pediatr. 2004; 5(4): 228–238. CrossRef
- Taxman F, Ressler L. Public health is public safety: revamping the correctional mission. In: Frost NA, Freilich JD, Clear TR, eds. Contemporary Issues in Criminal Justice Policy: Policy Proposals from the American Society of Criminology Conference. Belmont, CA: Cengage/Wadsworth; 2009: 321–341.
- Andrew DA, Kiessling JJ. Program structure and effective correctional practices: a summary of the CaVIC research. In: Ross RR, Gendraeau P, eds. Effective Correctional Treatment. Toronto, Canada: Butterworth; 1980: 441–463.
- Taxman FS, Shapardson ES, Byrne JM. Tools of the Trade: A Guide to Incorporating Science into Practice. Washington, D.C.: National Institute of Corrections; 2004.
- Walters ST, Clark MD, Gingerich R, Meltzer ML. Motivating Offenders to Change: A Guide for Probation and Parole. Washington, D.C.: National Institute of Justice.
- Pregnancy and Drinking among Women Offenders under Community Supervision in the United States: 2004–2008
Journal of Urban Health
Volume 89, Issue 3 , pp 500-509
- Cover Date
- Print ISSN
- Online ISSN
- Springer US
- Additional Links
- Criminal offenders
- Hung-En Sung (1)
- Author Affiliations
- 1. Department of Criminal Justice, John Jay College of Criminal Justice, 899 Tenth Avenue, New York, NY, 10019, USA