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  • on June 1, 2012 -

At America’ s Expense: The Mass Incarceration of the Elderly

Aging prisoners | June 2012

An ACLU report that highlights the problem of aging prisoners. CAPPS is actively working to address the problem of aging prisoners, especially individuals serving life terms.

Click here to read this important report:

“The United States keeps elderly men and women locked up despite an abundance of evidence demonstrating that recidivism drops dramatically with age. For example, in New York, only 7% of prisoners released from prison at ages 50-64 returned to prison for new convictions within three years. That number drops to 4% for prisoners age 65 and older. In contrast, this number is 16% for prisoners released at age 49 and younger. Further, most aging prisoners are not incarcerated for murder, but are in prison for low-level crimes. For example, in Texas, 65% of prisoners age 50 and older are incarcerated for nonviolent drug, property, and other nonviolent crimes.

This increasing warehousing of aging prisoners for low-level crimes and longer sentences is a nefarious outgrowth of the “tough on crime” and “war on drugs” policies of the 1980s and 1990s. Given the nation’s current over-incarceration epidemic and persistent economic crisis, lawmakers should consider implementing parole reforms to release those elderly prisoners who no longer pose sufficient safety threats to justify their continued incarceration.”


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