This Penn study reveals more bad news about the impacts of time spent incarcerated - Generocity Philly

Results

Aug. 22, 2016 3:03 pm

This Penn study reveals more bad news about the impacts of time spent incarcerated

Can't make bail? That's time in jail before your trial — and a 30 percent higher chance of committing a more serious felony upon release.

Less of this.

(Photo by Flickr user Jobs For Felons Hub, used under a Creative Commons license)

We know the cycle of recidivism in Philadelphia is particularly vehement.

This is a city where 65 percent of returning citizens wind up back in a cell. It’s a city where prisons currently house over 7,000 inmates, 60 percent of whom are incarcerated while awaiting trial.

A new study of inmates in a Texas prison by Penn Law discovered people who are incarcerated because they can’t afford to make bail after committing low-level, nonviolent offenses are 23 percent more likely to commit another misdemeanor.

Thirty percent, however, are more likely to commit a “more serious felony within 18 months of leaving jail,” reports WHYY.

It’s what local prison reform advocate El Sawyer calls the “pull of gravity” — reentrants often come home to environments where poverty reigns and their criminal histories render them unemployable. It’s why reentrants-turned-advocates like Sawyer and REDEEMED founder Bill Cobb are rolling up their sleeves and working in neighborhoods most affected by mass incarceration and the cycle of poverty.

Current policy that keeps low-level offenders without bail money incarcerated is driven more by money than it is public safety, said Pa. Secretary of Corrections John Wetzel last month.

From our Partners

But the study could soon be less relevant for future Philadelphia: The city is currently reforming its bail system in its MacArthur Foundation-funded effort to cut its prison population by a third.

And federal reform may be on the way, too: This weekend saw an announcement from the Department of Justice that it is “unconstitutional” to keep those who can’t make bail in jail, reports NBC News.

 

-30-
LEAVE A COMMENT

From our Partners

Rethinking disciplinary power in shelter

Meet Trooper Sanders, Benefits Data Trust’s new CEO

Kneel, donate, or burn it all down? Decarceration and 5 types of justice work

SPONSORED

Generocity Philly

Systems blocking people from self-sufficiency

Philadelphia, PA

United Way of Greater Philadelphia & Southern New Jersey

Social Venture Partners Associate

Apply Now
Center City Philadelphia

The Chamber of Commerce for Greater Philadelphia

Programs Manager, Creative & Innovative Businesses

Apply Now
Philadelphia, PA

Community Legal Services, Inc

Aging & Disabilities Unit Paralegal- Two (2) Job Openings

Apply Now

Nan Feyler is the new executive director of the PA Innocence Project

After three years of planning, Hidden Lives Illuminated is ready to premiere

PA becomes first state to institute Clean Slate law to seal old and minor criminal records

SPONSORED

Generocity Philly

JEVS+SNHU partnership is creating affordable, flexible degree programs for Philly

Philadelphia

Fairmount Ventures Inc

Research Assistant (Part time)

Apply Now
Philadelphia

Fairmount Ventures Inc

Project Manager – Consultant

Apply Now

Sign-up for daily news updates from Generocity