Fifty Years of Mass Incarceration
May 2, 2023
The Sentencing Project
2023 marks 50 years since the beginning of mass incarceration in 1973, when the U.S. prison population started increasing every single year for nearly four decades, according to Nazgol Ghandnoosh. Ghandnoosh, who works for The Sentencing Project, shared some sobering numbers: today, over five million people are under supervision by the criminal legal system, and nearly two million people, disproportionately Black, are living in prisons and jails. During this conversation, she delved into the different costs of incarceration – both on the incarcerated and on our society – and highlighted efforts needed to bring down our prison population.
For more on this topic
- Check out Ghandnoosh’s brief for the Sentencing Project, Ending 50 Years of Mass Incarceration: Urgent Reform Needed to Protect Future Generations
- Read her report on racial disparities in the prison system: Black Lives Matter: Eliminating Racial Inequity in the Criminal Justice System