America 's High Prison Population

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America’s High Prison Population Since the 1970s, America’s prison population rate has risen 700%. Despite the U.S. comprising only 5% of the world’s population, it is the largest jailer with 25% of the world’s prison population with one in 99 adults in prison and one in 31 under some type of correctional control (Mass Incarceration Problems, 2014, p. 1). According to 2013 data, 2.2 million are currently incarcerated in U.S. prisons or jails (Incarceration, 2013, para. 1), a figure that indicates a rising problem with prison overcrowding. While prison overcrowding increases the economic burdens on local and state governments, common factors leading to the high prison population is linked to the need for improved juvenile programs that deter criminal behavior and fund for rehabilitation for reentry into mainstream society. With effective programs to deter juvenile crime and to aid in offender reentry coupled with sentencing reforms, overcrowding in the nation’s prisons would decline.
Among nearly 100,000 youth under age 18 released from U.S. prisons each year, the majority “are not provided with the critical assistance necessary for successful transition back to their communities, schools, homes, and peer groups” (Youth Reentry, 2012, p. 1). Instead, these youths return to neighborhoods that tend to lack the support programs necessary to ensure a positive transition back into mainstream society. Disturbingly, these youths frequently return to neighborhoods with high crime
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