Falling through the Cracks: the Plight of Women Incarcerated with Children



  • Women incarcerated with children represent a small percentage of the prison population, their specific concerns and challenges therefore get left out at policy, planning, budgeting and implementation of government and private interventions. As the number of female inmates in Uganda rises, the number of women detained with children is rising significantly


  • The Constitutional (Sentencing Guidelines for Courts of Judicature) (Practice) Directions, 2013) are not uniformly applied: judicial officers are not giving due consideration to the best interests of the child when handing down sentences to pregnant women and women with babies. As a result, a large number of the women in prison with children are first time petty offenders.


  • While women detained in urban prisons have better access to health care services, accommodation facilities and food both for themselves and their children; those in rural prisons face hardship in access to healthcare and nutritious food for their children.