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September 27, 2007

Is prison population growth slowing down?

Gr2007092700094 As detailed here, earlier this year The Pew Charitable Trusts released a big report entitled forecasting that prison populations will continue to grow sharply over the next few years.  However, this new Washington Post article suggests that prison growth has slowed considerably this decade.  The article, entitled "Influx of U.S. Inmates Slowing, Census Says: Number Incarcerated Still a Record High; Sentencing in '90s Cited as Factor," starts this way:

After two decades of massive growth, the U.S. prison population began to level off in the first six years of this century, according to 2006 census statistics released today. At nearly 2.1 million, the number of adults in correctional institutions remains at an all-time high. Still, that figure represents a 4 percent rise since 2000 -- nowhere near the 77 percent spike in the prison population from 1990 to 2000.

September 27, 2007 at 08:09 AM | Permalink


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Interesting that the largest percentage growth in the new century according to the graphic is for over-65 and female inmates.

Posted by: Gritsforbreakfast | Sep 27, 2007 8:31:57 AM


Some of the increase in the number older inmates may be sex offenders. One of the disturbing trends involving female inmates that I have noted is the increase in the percentage of violent felonies and in our prison the percentage of mentally ill female prisoners is twice that of males.

Posted by: JSN | Sep 27, 2007 9:05:53 AM

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