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INCARCERATION


 
The United States is the world's leader in incarceration with 2.2 million people currently in the nation's prisons or jails -- a 500% increase over the past thirty years. These trends have resulted in prison overcrowding and state governments being overwhelmed by the burden of funding a rapidly expanding penal system, despite increasing evidence that large-scale incarceration is not the most effective means of achieving public safety.

U.S. State and Federal Prison Population, 1925-2013

Incarceration News
February 10, 2016 (The Sentencing Project)
New Publication: The State of Sentencing 2015: Developments in Policy and Practice

The State of Sentencing 2015: Developments in Policy and Practice highlights reforms in 30 states that demonstrate a continued trend to reform sentencing policies and scale back the use of imprisonment without compromising public safety. The report provides an overview of recent policy reforms in the areas of sentencing, probation and parole, collateral consequences, and juvenile justice.


January 28, 2016
State Advocacy Update: Unlocking the Vote with Grassroots Support

Maryland: Unlocking the Vote

New Jersey: Challenging Racial Disparities in the Criminal Justice System

Missouri: Scaling Back Truth in Sentencing

Other News: Conneticut, Delaware, Kansas, and more


January 20, 2016
Race & Justice News: The Limits of Focusing on Racial Disparity

Books: Youth of Color in the Changing Juvenile Justice System

The Limits of Focusing on Racial Disparity

Policing: Racial and Ethnic Disparities in New Jersey’s Low-Level Offense Arrests 

Milwaukee Police Department Requests Justice Department Review

Nationwide Racial Disparities in Drivers Killed by Police 

Sentencing: Rhode Island’s Overburdened and Racially Imbalanced Probation System


January 7, 2016 (Guardian)
Our compassion for drug users should not be determined by race

"Political leaders are displaying increasing amounts of empathy for those suffering from addiction. But, in a society still largely divided along racial lines, our willingness to express compassion is all too often a function of how much we can personally identify with those who are suffering – and that goes for presidential candidates too," writes The Sentencing Project's Executive Director Marc Mauer in the Guardian.


January 3, 2016 (Democracy Journal)
A 20-Year Maximum for Prison Sentences

To kick off 2016, Democracy Journal asked contributors for one targeted and straightforward idea that the next presidential administration should pursue in a symposium called "16 for ’16." The Sentencing Project's Marc Mauer's contribution proposes a 20-year maximum on federal sentences, barring exceptional circumstances.