California’s new state budget continues the persistent trend of higher state spending on corrections, despite a declining crime rate and an anticipated drop in the state prison population in the coming years. New funding has been made available for jail construction, even though various alternatives to incarceration could promote public safety and would be more cost-effective. And continued growth in corrections spending means fewer resources available for investing in education, child care, job training, and other state priorities.
As part of an ongoing series of Twitter chats hosted by Californians for Safety and Justice, CBP Policy Analyst Selena Teji next week will discuss trends in corrections spending and criminal justice policy, including how state leaders might better align budget choices with the needs of California’s families and communities. The Twitter chat will take place Tuesday, July 22, from noon to 1 p.m PDT. You can follow the discussion — and offer questions and comments — via the #SchoolsNotPrisons hashtag. We hope you can join us for this timely discussion.
— Steven Bliss