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Elective sterilizations have been restricted in state prisons since 1994. But between 2006 and 2010, more than 100 women were sterilized at state prisons. While some women opted for the surgery, other have claimed they were pressured. Corey G. Johnson from The Center for Investigative Reporting and Ana Kasparian from The Young Turks speak to former inmates who witnessed firsthand the bad practices at prison infirmaries and investigate how this was allowed to happen.

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Corey G. Johnson

Corey G. Johnson is a reporter on the government oversight team at The Center for Investigative Reporting. A native of Atlanta, Corey has exposed secrecy, mismanagement, corruption and abuse of power inside governmental, educational and police organizations. He was the lead reporter on CIR's On Shaky Ground series, which uncovered systemic weaknesses in earthquake protections at California public schools. That work was a finalist for a 2012 Pulitzer Prize and won the IRE Medal from Investigative Reporters and Editors, the Scripps Howard Award for public service reporting and the Gannett Foundation Award for Innovation in Watchdog Journalism. Before joining CIR, Corey covered higher education at The Fayetteville Observer in North Carolina. He is a graduate of Florida A&M University.

Chavala Madlena is an investigative journalist and multimedia producer. Before joining The Center for Investigative Reporting, she was based at The Guardian’s investigative documentary unit, Guardian Films. Chavala has worked on stories ranging from death squads in Iraq to WikiLeaks, land grabbing in Africa, miscarriages of justice, al-Qaida, phone hacking and a joint BBC investigation into “vulture funds” that sue impoverished African nations for inflated amounts, a story that resulted in changes to legislation in the United Kingdom. Films she has worked on have won Webby, Edward R. Murrow and George Polk awards, and others have been nominated for Amnesty International, Rory Peck, One World Media and Commonwealth Broadcasting Association awards. Chavala has worked on stories for The Guardian, the BBC, The Centre for Investigative Journalism, Al-Jazeera, HBO, ProPublica, Current TV and MTV. She is a U.S. native but has worked in the U.K., Jerusalem, Moscow and Sydney.


Sharon Pieczenik is a senior associate producer for The Center for Investigative Reporting. Her passion lies in creating multimedia stories that are both entertaining and educational. She has interviewed and filmed people from a myriad of cultures, from the gauchos of Argentina to the inmates of Montana state prisons, from miners in Wyoming to conservationists in Madagascar. Before joining CIR, Sharon crafted multimedia strategies and deliverables for organizations like Polar Bears International, the Greater Yellowstone Coalition, Natural History Unit Africa and Montana PBS. Sharon studied international relations at Stanford University and received her master’s degree in science and natural history filmmaking from Montana State University.

David Ritsher

David Ritsher is the senior editor for TV and documentaries for Reveal. He has produced and edited award-winning investigative documentaries for over 15 years, on subjects ranging from loose nukes in Russia to Latino gangs in Northern California. His work has appeared on FRONTLINE, PBS NewsHour, ABC News, National Geographic, Discovery, KQED and other national broadcast outlets. Before joining CIR, David was the coordinating producer for FRONTLINE/World for over six broadcast seasons and championed much of its experimentation with video on the web.