Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Could prison policy in Alabama be changing?

Google News/ The Canadian Press reports that due to the budget shortfalls of many states, tough-on-crime policies could be changing:

Experts on national sentencing expect almost every state to adopt the new approach sooner or later — perhaps most this year because of the state fiscal crisis. The Pew Center is now working with policymakers in Alabama, Arkansas, Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, North Carolina, Ohio, Kentucky, Texas and Washington about adjusting sentencing policies. Nationally, states spend an estimated $50 billion each year in locking up criminals — four times the amount spent two decades ago and second only to Medicaid spending — according to the Pew Center. A study released by the group last year shows the amount states spent locking up inmates grew nearly 350 per cent from $11 billion in 1987 to $48 billion in 2008.

Tough on crime policies are failed experiments. They simply do not work. We need a more holistic approach, much like the one listed below: