Challenging mass incarceration and over-criminalization through research, advocacy, and organizing. Get email updates: https://t.co/AyYiUaz4RV
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Nov 23 • 19 tweets • 5 min read
🧵We've pulled together some of the false claims about crime and incarceration you're most likely to hear at the Thanksgiving dinner table, and the data and facts to help you push back:
Claim #1: "Crime is up because of bail reform!"
Very few places have actually eliminated or reduced their dependence on money bail.
In those places that have reined in their money bail system, most saw decreases or negligible increases in crime after reforms...
Nov 17 • 9 tweets • 2 min read
NEW: In the last 5 years, prisons in 13 states have replaced physical mail sent to incarcerated people with scans. There's no evidence that this policy - which has a chilling effect on the mail while benefiting private companies - does anything to make prisons safer.
Many county jails are implementing mail scanning, too. parents trying to stay in touch with their kids, journalists, lawyers, even nonprofits and educational organizations all report long delays and problems with their recipients trying to read scanned letters and photos.
Nov 3 • 14 tweets • 5 min read
When counties release "jail assessment" analyses (or commission companies to produce analyses) purporting to prove the need for a bigger jail, their reports often distort the facts. 🧵
The reports typically project that the # of people in jail will stay the same or grow, thus justifying the need for a bigger jail. But their projections often ignore criminal justice reforms that are likely to pass - or already have passed! - that will lower the jail population.
Nov 1 • 7 tweets • 2 min read
Money bail doesn't keep communities safe; it enriches big bail and insurance companies. And we found that in at least 28 states, including NY, California, Hawaii, and Texas, these companies have been avoiding paying $$ that they owe the criminal justice system. /1
We scoured decades of state audits and local news reports for our recent report "All Profit, No Risk: How the bail industry exploits the legal system": prisonpolicy.org/reports/bail.h…
Oct 31 • 5 tweets • 2 min read
NYC is moving to ban physical mail at Rikers and other jails by hiring a vendor to scan letters and distribute them to people digitally on tablets. The "vendors" are companies that use tablets as a way to get money out of incarcerated people and their families. /1
Here are some examples of tablet services we've seen monetized before:
- Email (requires a 25-cent "stamp" in most facilities w/ tablets)
- Books (5 cents/minute to read in WV prisons)
- Video calls ($6 for a 30-minute call in California prisons)
Oct 17 • 6 tweets • 4 min read
NEW: We map where people in #Montana prisons come from, going (where possible) down to the neighborhood level. This is the 12th installment in our series of reports about the geography of mass incarceration. #MTNews#MTPol /1
ICYMI, we also have reports about:
A growing body of research shows that mass incarceration's greatest impact on voting does not happen via felony disenfranchisement laws. More often, not voting is the collateral damage of someone being punished by the state, or seeing their loved ones punished.
Even going to jail for a very short time for a misdemeanor makes someone less likely to vote after release - "either by changing their attitudes or by making their life sufficiently difficult that they couldn’t make it to the polls," 2019 research shows. washingtonpost.com/outlook/2019/0…
Jun 30 • 5 tweets • 1 min read
For many people on probation and parole, traveling out of state for abortion care is already next to impossible. 🧵
On any given day in the U.S., 666,413 women are on probation or parole. In many jurisdictions — eg Louisiana, Tennessee, Kentucky, Idaho, & Texas — it’s common for people on probation and parole to face restrictions on where they can travel.
Jun 28 • 6 tweets • 2 min read
Outside of prisons, the U.S. has a handle on hepatitis C. Yet in prisons, where it’s MUCH more likely to be found, states miss a huge opportunity to make public health strides with this infectious disease. Here are some key takeaways about the carceral hepatitis C crisis:
An estimated 30% of all people living with hepatitis C pass through correctional facilities every year. Yet, a 2015 survey showed that a mere 16% of prisons tested everyone for hepatitis C antibodies upon admission. hcvguidelines.org/references/mau…
Apr 13 • 6 tweets • 2 min read
NEW REPORT: The U.S. allows children — especially Black children — to grow up in poverty. With new demographic data, we can see more clearly how many of those kids grow up to fill state prisons. Here’s a short thread about the data.
About 1 in 10 people in state prison today was homeless before turning 18.
1 in 5 was in public housing before 18.
1 in 5 was in foster care.
For Black incarcerated people, the numbers are higher.
Mar 14 • 7 tweets • 3 min read
NEW: We’ve just released the 2022 edition of Mass Incarceration: The Whole Pie - the most comprehensive, up-to-date view of who is locked up in the U.S., where, and why: prisonpolicy.org/reports/pie202…
This report shows huge drops in prison and jail populations. Why? Thread.
First, the key #s from our report:
- ~1.9 million people are locked up in the U.S. today.
- Prison populations fell ~16% during the pandemic.
- Local jail populations fell about 13%.
Jan 13 • 11 tweets • 5 min read
Incarcerated men at Rikers are on strike protesting terrible conditions, chiefly a lack of access to medical care. The strike is news, but the problems at Rikers aren't new, nor unique to NYC...
16 people died at Rikers last year. That's consistent with a trend of rising jail deaths across the country: prisonpolicy.org/blog/2021/06/2…
Aug 18, 2021 • 6 tweets • 3 min read
The U.S. accounts for over 30% of the world’s incarcerated women, despite holding only 4% of the global female population.
Iowa is banning families and activists from sending books to ppl in prison, claiming it's necessary to curb drug contraband. Banning books would be an overreaction to drugs entering prisons, even if it WAS effective. But there is NO evidence that it is. iowapublicradio.org/ipr-news/2021-…
Other states have been caught making false claims that banning books will make prisons safer.
See how quickly Washington State officials' false claims collapsed when a @seattletimes journalist probed:
Apr 22, 2021 • 4 tweets • 2 min read
Correctional staff in most states have been eligible for #COVID vaccines for months, a recognition of the role they play introducing the virus into prisons & bringing it back out. However, new data suggest most prison staff have refused vaccinations (1/4) prisonpolicy.org/blog/2021/04/2…
Against recommendations of medical experts, many states vaccinated correctional staff before incarcerated people, often claiming that they would be a barrier against the virus. With less than half of prison staff vaccinated in most states, it’s clear this was a mistake. (2/4)
Jul 10, 2020 • 6 tweets • 1 min read
While state criminal justice reforms often look like progress, their impact is inherently limited when violent offenders are categorically excluded. Let's look at states that have passed criminal justice reforms that only cover a narrow subset of the prison population. THREAD⬇️
North Dakota, Minnesota, Iowa, Kansas, Arizona, Nevada, Massachusetts, Alaska, Hawaii, Georgia, New Jersey, Maryland, Connecticut, New York, and Rhode Island single out violent offenses from opportunities for earlier or compassionate release. (2/6)
The #covid19 death rate in prisons is 39 deaths per 100,000 people. Much higher than the death rate in the U.S. population (29 per 100,000). 1/4 jamanetwork.com/journals/jama/…
When the authors adjusted the death rate for age and sex (because the prison population is disproportionately young and male), the death rate in prisons was THREE TIMES higher than would be expected in the U.S. population. 2/4
Apr 9, 2020 • 13 tweets • 4 min read
States that are expanding prison releases and saving lives right now (thanks to sustained, relentless advocacy) - a thread:
(If you know of others, DM or comment, please!)
Massachusetts: State Supreme Court ruled that people held for technical probation/parole violations are eligible for hearings to determine if they can be released. 2/13 wbur.org/news/2020/04/0…