North Carolina Department of Correction news release

FEBRUARY 2, 1998

Female Boot Camp Opening Soon

HOFFMAN - Starting this spring, North Carolina judges will have a new option when it comes to sentencing young female offenders. Instead of prison, judges will have the opportunity to send these women to the state’s first female boot camp.

Scheduled to open later this year in Hoffman, the female boot camp will be part of the IMPACT program, a highly structured military-style program for probationers between the ages of 16 and 30. The female boot camp will become the third boot camp in the IMPACT program. Two male boot camps already exist and, according to John Taylor, IMPACT Commandant, there will be very little difference between the male and female boot camps.

"The female boot camp will follow the same operating procedures as the male boot camps with very few exceptions," he said. For three months, the female trainees will rise each morning at 4:30 a.m., just as the males do, and go to bed at 9:00 p.m.. They will spend more than seven hours a day working, usually clearing land or cleaning property for government agencies, and at least two hours in school. For the remaining 16.5 hours that they are awake, the trainees will be engaged in physical training, drill and exercises to instill self-confidence and discipline.

There will be one main difference between the female boot camp and the male boot camp, however. Female trainees will not have to get their heads shaved like the males. They will, however, be required to keep their hair above their collars either by pinning it up or getting it cut.

"We are not going to shave their heads, because we are not here to degrade anybody," Taylor said. "We are trying to build the trainees up and make sure they have pride in themselves."

Correction Secretary Mack Jarvis said the female boot camp will provide a much needed service for the fast growing female inmate population.

"While female inmates account for only six percent of the state prison population, their number has grown at a rapid pace, especially among this age group," Jarvis said. "The female boot camp will enable us to provide the same opportunities for women as we do for men."


updated May 12, 1998