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  • In1841,DorotheaDixagreedtoteach SundayschoolatajailinMassachusetts. Littledidsheknowtheimpactthat teachingthatclasswouldlaterhaveon her.
  • Whileshewasthereshenoticedhowdirtythejailwasandhow poortheinmateswerebeingtreated.Theinmateswerelivingin awfullivingconditions,especiallythementallyill.
  • Dorotheasawinmatesboundinchains,lockedincages,branded, whipped,andpeopleindebtor'sprisonhadnopossiblewaytopay offtheirdebttogetout.Iftheyhaddebt,theyhadnowaytoget outofjailbecausetherewasnomoneytobemadeinjail.
  • So,twoyearslater,aftershehadgatheredenoughinformation tomakearocksolidcase,shepresentedinformationaboutthe conditionsinprisonsfortheMassachusettsstatelegislature.
  • Dixexplainedtothelegislaturealloftheawfultreatmentthathad beenforcedupontheinmates.Shebroughtupthebeatings,cages, closets,cellars,stalls,pens,chains,andthelackofclothes.
  • Afterhertalktolegislation,publicasylumsweremadefor thementallyill,andshedidn'tstopthere,shealsovisited otherstateswheretheyvotedtocreateasylums.Bythe timeshepassedawayin1887,therewasnolonger debtor'sprison,stateshadcreatedsystemsforchildrenso theyweren'tmixedinwithadults,andtheyhadoutlawed cruelpunishments.DorotheaDixtrulychangedtheway prisonerswerehandledandhelpedtoshapethewayour systemistoday.
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