TITLE

Black Males and Jails

PUB. DATE
March 1996
SOURCE
Society;Mar/Apr96, Vol. 33 Issue 3, p3
SOURCE TYPE
Academic Journal
DOC. TYPE
Article
ABSTRACT
This article focuses on a report from the U.S. Department of Justice, which revealed that nearly 7 percent of all African-American male adults were in jail or prison in 1994, compared with less than 1 percent of white male adults. The report also found that by June 1995 the number of U.S. citizens behind bars reached 1.1 million. This was an increase of nearly 9 percent since June 30, 1994. The total number of people held in prisons and jails has almost tripled since 1980. The statistics were especially stark when broken down into racial terms, with the number of African-American inmates in 1994 surpassing the number of whites in state or federal prisons and local jails for the first time. The report found that the incarceration rate for whites had remained little changed in the last ten years, while the level for African-Americans had climbed steadily. The report offered no explanations for the racial disparities, but civil rights leaders have complained that tough new federal drug and sentencing laws have had a disproportionate impact on African-Americans. The report gave no reasons for the overall explosion in the prison population, which dates to 1980. But experts have cited more arrests for drug offenses, more violent crimes in inner cities and harsher sentencing laws.
ACCESSION #
9603063385

 

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