Overpopulation of Our Prisons

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Final Paper Justin C Lee SOC305 Crime and Society Prof. Ekaterina Gorislavsky October 10, 2014 Overpopulation of our Prisons Prison overcrowding has become a very serious issue within the United States. Throughout the years numbers have grown at an alarming rate and each day our prisons become more and more unstable. Rates are growing for a number of reasons. More people are becoming incarcerated because of changes and improvements to the laws as well as the increase in law enforcement tactics to take crime off the streets. With these improvements comes the fact that our prisons are too small for the amount of people that are being put in jail, this includes county, state, as well as federal. We can also blame our overpopulation on the fact that crime rates fluctuate such as what we are seeing in our country now. With a bad economy comes more crime, people get desperate in times of need and will do whatever it takes to put food on the table or pay the bills to have a roof over their heads. Another negative aspect of overpopulating our prison system is the fact that the tax payer gets stuck with the larger bills to house these inmates. Overcrowding of our prisons is a bad situation that will continue to get worse unless our government figures out a solution. Inmates are at risk, correctional officers are at risk, and the American public is at risk. Without a solution soon, we will be seeing a large scale problem get much larger. Overpopulation is defined as “the condition of having a population so dense as to cause environmental deterioration, an impaired quality of life, or a population crash” (Webster, 2014). Today our prison system has fallen into a desperate time with overcrowding and overpopulation of our prisons county, state, and federal. In the United States we have about 5% of the world’s population,

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