Criminal Justice Reform

  • The United States has the highest incarceration rate in the world.  We incarcerate 2.3 million people combined in our various detention centers. 

  • In California, it costs $75,560 per year to house a prisoner, more than the cost of a student attending Harvard for the same year.  Criminal justice reform must be addressed, and honestly, given engrained prejudices and wealthy stake-holders.

  • The “war on drugs” has led to generations of non-violent drug offenders and addicts serving hard time.  We need to prioritize shifting our resources to community-based prevention and treatment for substance abuse.  

  • People of color make up 37% of the United States’ population, but 67% of its prison population.  High rates of incarceration in disadvantaged communities affect families, social cohesion, and life prospects.  

  • For-profit, private prisons have expanded, reaping the benefits of our over-crowded system.  Lucrative contracts are awarded to incarcerate state and federal inmates, and detainees from sheriffs’ offices, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), and the U.S. Marshals Service. The private prisons’ lobby discourages policymakers’ efforts to reduce prison populations.

     

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