The prison boom in America may be coming to an end. After twenty years of expansion, which has resulted in over 2 million people being currently imprisoned in the US, there is growing evidence that the number of people being sent to prison is leveling off and even decreasing in some States.
In this open lecture hosted by London South Bank University, Professor Michael Jacobson, currently Director of the Vera Institute in New York and who was previously the Commissioner of Corrections in New York appointed by Mayor Giuliani, examines the reasons for this change in prison use. Drawing on the material in his recently published book ‘Downsizing Prisons’ Professor Jacobson will outline the ways in which changing public attitudes, political priorities as well as the growing unwillingness to fund expensive prison building programmes in parts of America have created a new climate in which penal reform is not only possible but necessary. Michael Jacobson outlines a detailed strategy, which is both radical and realistic, and which he argues is able to help reduce the over-reliance on imprisonment, while improving the prospects for public safety.
A distinguished panel of policy makers and penal reformers including Martin Narey, Chief Executive of NOMS, Frances Crook, Director of the Howard League for Penal Reform and Juliet Lyon, Director of the Prison Reform Trust, will discuss the possibilities for decreasing the level of prison use in England and Wales.
The lecture takes place on 14th June at 6.00pm at London South Bank University in the Events Theatre, Keyworth Centre, Keyworth Street.
Ends Notes to Editors
Professor Michael Jacobson was the Commissioner of Probation for the City of New York in 1992 and was then appointed by Mayor Giuliani to become Correctional Commissioner of New York in 1995. He subsequently became a Professor of Criminology at John Jay College, City University of New York and then in 2004 became Director of the Vera Institute in New York.
Posted: 13th June 2005