Monday, July 27, 2015

Chicago's Million Dollar Blocks

A war on neighborhoods

We hand out harsh sentences for all types of offenses. We give these sentences, overwhelmingly, to Chicagoans who live in our segregated, low-income neighborhoods on the west and south sides. This amounts to a war on neighborhoods.

Millions Committed to Incarceration, 2005-2009

Millions allocated to incarcerate residents on individual city blocks

In Chicago, over a 5 year period from 2005-2009, there were:

851 blocks

with over $1 million committed to prison sentences

121 blocks

with over $1 million committed to prison sentences for non-violent drug offenses

This is wasteful spending at its worst, especially given that research has shown that incarceration does not necessarily reduce crime in neighborhoods.

The good news is that there are many innovative, common-sense, and creative approaches being used elsewhere in the United States to expand the menu of options for public safety

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