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Issues

Racial Disparity

publications
September 17, 2019

U.S. Prison Population Trends: Massive Buildup and Modest Decline

While most states have downsized their prison populations in recent years, the pace of decarceration is insufficient to undo nearly four decades of unrelenting growth.
publications
August 29, 2019

Virtual Life Sentences

Over 44,000 people around the country are serving a sentence of 50 years or more. This fact sheet provides a summary of this long-overlooked population of individuals serving such sentences.
Featured Story
Featured Story

Lawrence and Lamont Garrison

Sentences for federal drug crimes are based on the quantity of the drugs involved, not the individual’s role in the crime. The emphasis on quantity rather than the role of the offender, along with the conspiracy laws, too often result in disproportionate sentencing, even for first-time offenses such as the Garrisons’.
news
State Advocacy News: Working with Crime Survivors to Challenge Life Imprisonment
July 29, 2019

State Advocacy News: Working with Crime Survivors to Challenge Life Imprisonment

State coalitions challenging life imprisonment include a range of voices like persons formerly serving life prison terms, faith leaders, and restorative justice practitioners. Crime survivors are also key allies in scaling back life imprisonment. Victim led advocacy represents a range of perspectives.
news
Race & Justice News: “To Protect and Slur?” Law Enforcement & Social Media
July 24, 2019

Race & Justice News: “To Protect and Slur?” Law Enforcement & Social Media

Black homicide victims' families less likely to receive victim compensation, increased racial disparity in Missouri traffic stops, San Francisco and Connecticut tackle racial disparities in prosecutions, and more in Race & Justice News.
Featured Story
Featured Story

Christopher Poulos

When Chris Poulos was arrested, he experienced firsthand the difference that money can make in the criminal justice system. He recounts the experience in his own words.
publications
July 23, 2019

Juvenile Life Without Parole: An Overview

Josh Rovner
The United States stands alone as the only nation that sentences people to life without parole for crimes committed before turning 18. This briefing paper reviews the Supreme Court precedents that limited the use of JLWOP and the challenges that remain.
publications
June 27, 2019

Felony Disenfranchisement: A Primer

Jean Chung
As of 2016, 6.1 million Americans were prohibited from voting due to laws that disenfranchise citizens convicted of felony offenses. Felony disenfranchisement rates vary by state, as states institute a wide range of disenfranchisement policies.
Featured Story
Featured Story

Willie Mays Aikens

In 2008, Willie Mays Aikens made headlines when a federal judge reduced his lengthy prison term to 14 years as a result of the U.S. Sentencing Commission’s adjustment to the crack cocaine sentencing guidelines. Aikens was released in June 2008.
publications
June 06, 2019

Incarcerated Women and Girls

Over the past quarter century, there has been a profound change in the involvement of women within the criminal justice system. This is the result of more expansive law enforcement efforts, stiffer drug sentencing laws, and post-conviction barriers to reentry that uniquely affect women.
news
Race & Justice News: Racial Disparity in Opioid Treatment
June 03, 2019

Race & Justice News: Racial Disparity in Opioid Treatment

Treatment disparity for opioid use disorder, Phoenix Sheriff's Deputies halve traffic stops amidst racial bias scrutiny, less violence reporting in new immigrant destinations, and more in Race & Justice News.
news
New Prison and Jail Population Figures Released by U.S. Department of Justice
April 25, 2019

New Prison and Jail Population Figures Released by U.S. Department of Justice

By yearend 2017, the United States prison population had declined by 7.3% since reaching its peak level in 2009, according to new data released by the Department of Justice.
news
Race & Justice News: Violent Rap Lyrics Are Not Confessions
April 12, 2019

Race & Justice News: Violent Rap Lyrics Are Not Confessions

Rappers explain that violent rap lyrics are not confessions to Supreme Court, LAPD plans to change its data-driven policing program, Maryland lawmakers allow Johns Hopkins University to create armed police, and more in Race & Justice News.
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