Alexis Rowland is a Ph.D. Student in Criminology, Law and Society at the University of California, Irvine.
In the pursuit of abolishing prisons, Alexis studies prisons, penal policy, and punishment, especially those issues which affect gender and sexual minority (GSM) populations. Her work explores the ways in which penal institutions influence hegemonic perceptions of minority groups, and in turn, how they contribute to social and material inequality. The goal of her studies is to produce knowledge that invites a diversity of communities and public institutions to support GSM people in their struggle—documenting the ways in which policy contributes to the population’s ongoing public health crises—and foster collaborative, community-based systems intended to mitigate current harms and prevent future ones.
As a queer woman, organizer, and former mental health counselor serving incarcerated peoples, Alexis has insight into the legal and social constraints that sustain inequality and antiqueer violence. Those experiences inform her research, which she hopes will empower communities to improve the material and social conditions of their most vulnerable.
It has been seven years since North Carolina made headlines for enacting a “bathroom bill” — legislation intended to prevent transgender people from using restrooms that align with their gender identity. After boycotts threatened to cost the state more than US$3.7 billion, legislators repealed the law in 2017. Since then, however, religious and political conservatives […]