More women are incarcerated per capita in Oklahoma than anywhere else in the world. Statewide, Oklahoma’s female incarceration rate is double the national average, but in Oklahoma County, the situation is direr, with nearly tripling the national average. The effects are taxing on the economy, with an average annual cost of $26,000 per inmate. The affect incarceration has on families may be more sobering. Each year, approximately 536 children are displaced due to their mother’s incarceration, and tragically, statistics show seven out of 10 of these children will eventually serve time in prison.
Of the 2,511 women currently incarcerated in Oklahoma, 62.1% are serving time for non-violent crimes. Statistically, 93% of Oklahoma’s incarcerated female population will be released eventually, after an average sentence of 2.02 years. Upon release, women face a number of barriers to successful reentry into society including: employment, income, community support, transportation, housing and substance abuse treatment.
TEEM equips individuals to overcome these barriers and break generational incarceration cycles through education, character development and work readiness training. Our comprehensive service model incorporates evidence-based curriculum, effective case management, one-on-one mentoring and job placement to holistically prepare individuals for a successful transition into society. With Impact Oklahoma’s support, TEEM serves over 50 of the 200 women who return to Oklahoma County each year. Together, we empower women impacted by incarceration to be healthy mothers, committed workers and contributing community members.