News OK “McLOUD — Despite a federal report that found incidents of inmate-on-inmate sexual violence were double the national average at Mabel Bassett Correctional Center, representatives from the prison declined to testify at an annual Department of Justice hearing on the matter Wednesday.
The 2012 Bureau of Justice Statistics report found 15.3 percent of the inmates surveyed at the female facility reported some form of sexual abuse or rape from another inmate. This rate was highest in the nation for female institutions.
The study was done as part of the Prison Rape Elimination Act, a 2003 federal law aimed at identifying the causes of sexual victimization in prisons and the types of inmates who are most vulnerable.
“We found that the Mabel Bassett facility uniquely stood out as a high-rate facility,” said Allen Beck, a BJS statistician.
“There’s no question that what we’re observing here is a significant amount of physical force, pressure, and coercion are involved.”
The purpose of the hearings is to assist the bureau’s research by gaining insight from prison officials and administration on what policies and procedures work and which ones do not.
A higher than average proportion of undereducated inmates, those experiencing high levels of psychological stress or mental disorders, and offenders who identify as non-heterosexual are all contributing factors to the facility’s elevated levels of sexual victimization, Beck said.” Full Article on News OK
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