Report: Blacks Locked Up 5x More Than Whites
Blacks in the United States are imprisoned at more than five times the rate of whites, and Hispanics are locked up at nearly double the white rate, according to a study released Wednesday by a criminal justice policy group.
The worst of the states:
In five states - Iowa, Vermont, New Jersey, Connecticut, and Wisconsin - African Americans are incarcerated at more than ten times the rate of whites.
You can read the report here (pdf.)
Among the recommended fixes:
- Revisit the domestic drug control strategy, including recalibrating sentencing laws, such as the federal cocaine statutes which result in disproportionate numbers of low-level offenders being prosecuted;
- Revisit the wisdom of mandatory minimum sentencing and restore appropriate judicial discretion to incorporate individual circumstances in the sentencing decision;
- Establish enforceable and binding standards for indigent defense that ensure the provision of quality representation for all defendants;
- Mandate that all legislation affecting the prison population be accompanied by a Racial Impact Statement to document the projected consequences for persons of color.
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