COVID pandemic increased racial disparities in US prison populations

A public data set on the size and racial composition of US prison populations has been generated. Its analysis indicates how biases in sentencing lengths shape prisons’ racial make-up in the United States.

Fifty years ago, the United States initiated an unprecedented increase in its prison population that disproportionately affected its racial minorities (see go.nature.com/3knvxcf ). From 2009, numbers of incarcerated people began to stabilize and modestly decline 1 . Writing in Nature , Klein et al. 2 report that conditions created by the COVID-19 pandemic led to a dramatic reduction in prison populations in every state. The authors find […]

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By Donato