Proportion Of Adults Under Corrections Control Fell 13% From 2007 To 2014


The proportion of adults in the U.S. under correctional control, either incarcerated or on probation or parole, declined 13 percent between 2007, when it reached its peak, and 2014, says a Pew Charitable Trusts analysis of data from the U.S. federal Bureau of Justice Statistics. About 6.8 million adults, or 1 in 36, were under federal, state, or local correctional control at the end of 2014, down from about 7.3 million, or 1 in 31, seven years earlier. The adult incarceration rate, which includes offenders in state and federal prisons and local jails, dropped 10 percent during that span, from 1 in 100 to 1 in 111. The adult community supervision rate, which includes those under supervision of federal, state, and local probation or parole officers, fell from 1 in 45 to 1 in 52, or 15 percent.

Since 2007, 31 states have revised their sentencing and corrections laws through the Justice Reinvestment Initiative, a public-private partnership that includes the U.S. Justice Department's Bureau of Justice Assistance, Pew, the Council of State Governments Justice Center, the Crime & Justice Institute, and the Vera Institute of Justice. Reforms vary from state to state; they aim to improve public safety and control taxpayer costs by prioritizing prison space for violent and chronic offenders and investing some savings in alternatives to incarceration that help cut recidivism for low-level offenders.

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