Girls Embracing Mothers to Be Featured on United Women in Faith’s Faith Talks Podcast￼
Part of Our Work as Christian Women is to Intervene in Situations that Could Derail Women and Girls From Fulfilling their Life’s Calling
For Immediate Release
NEW YORK, June 15, 2022 – Girls Embracing Mothers, the pioneering organization dedicated to breaking the cycle of incarceration for daughters of incarcerated mothers, will be featured on United Women in Faith’s Faith Talks podcast on Thursday, June 16 at 2:00 p.m. ET. Hosted by Jennifer R. Farmer, the podcast engages women of faith on pressing issues of social, racial and climate justice. The live recording of the podcast is open to press. Members of the media can register here.
GEM supports women and girls impacted by the criminal justice system through empowerment-based programs that strengthen the relationship between young girls and incarcerated mothers. It also offers reentry-based training for mothers who are incarcerated. GEM’s goal is to break the cycle of incarceration and support girls and women in their efforts to lead healthy, healed, and whole lives.
“When many people think about incarceration, they see and think about men even though for years women have comprised an increasing share of incarcerated persons,” said Jennifer R. Farmer, host of United Women in Faith’s Faith Talks podcast. “Disrupting this pattern cannot come through good intentions, but rather with targeted action. I am delighted to interview Brittany Barnett about her pioneering organization, Girls Embracing Mothers.”
The Sentencing Project reported that between 1980 and 2020, the number of incarcerated women increased more than 475%, rising from 26,326 in 1980 to 152,854 in 2020. The Sentencing Project also reported that the imprisonment rate for African American women is more than 1.7 times the rate of imprisonment for White women. Hispanic women are imprisoned at 1.3 times the rate of White women. Additionally, one of every 15 women is serving life in prison, and women serving life without parole increased 43%, compared to a 29% increase among men, between 2008 and 2020.
Ending mass incarceration and interrupting the School to Prison Pipeline has been a priority for United Women in Faith since 2016. The organization recently donated $250,000 to GEM to help further their work in achieving these goals.
“We are so grateful for United Women in Faith’s generous donation to help us further our work serving women and girls impacted by maternal incarceration,” said Brittany Barnett, founder of GEM. “As the daughter of a formerly incarcerated mother, I know first-hand how mass incarceration devastates families and entire communities. This grant will empower GEM to continue to make transformational change in reducing the trauma women and girls experience by the criminal justice system. Therefore, enriching the lives those most marginalized, and ultimately, breaking the cycle of incarceration.”
In addition to Barnett, Farmer will also interview Emily Jones, United Women in Faith executive for racial justice.
“Incarceration can be devastating for both mother and daughter. GEM helps maintain the mother-daughter connection while supporting girls and women to fully live into their own best selves,” Jones said. “As an organization committed to putting faith, hope, and love into action and supporting women, youth and children, United Women in Faith is proud to fund the pivotal work of Girls Embracing Mothers.”
“Part of our work as Christian women is to intervene in situations that could derail women and girls from fulfilling their life’s calling,” said Khia Shaw, United Women in Faith director for membership and engagement. “We also take seriously the biblical mandate in Romans 12:5 to ‘rejoice with those who rejoice and to mourn with those who mourn.’ That is why we are so pleased to be able to stand alongside GEM and support them as they see and support school-age girls of incarcerated mothers.”
“We know that girls of color face intersecting oppressions of gender, race, identity and class,” Shaw said. “Coupled with the impacts of having an incarcerated parent, girls of color are uniquely vulnerable. It is incumbent upon us and other women of faith to see girls of color and offer support to groups on the frontlines of supporting these young people.”
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