Prison Reform

Are too many nonviolent criminals being incarcerated?


America has more people in prisons and jails — 2.2 million — than any other country in the world. And over the next five years, the number of prison inmates is projected to grow three times faster than the national population. Prison crowding in California has become so critical that Republican Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger has tried sending inmates to other states. And in Philadelphia a federal judge has called crowded conditions in city jails inhumane, warning that prisoners might have to be released. With the cost of housing prisoners projected to reach $40 billion by 2011, alternatives to incarceration for nonviolent crimes are being proposed, even by law-and-order prison officials and politicians. Meanwhile, support is growing for more rehabilitation programs in prisons as well as ...

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