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Costs of incarceration

Putting people behind bars has hidden costs for society.

Another recent news item on the cost to society of the growing incarceration machine in this country. It is particularly relevant to San Bernardino County which is seeped in poverty… a root cause of crime and many other social ills. When faced with no opportunity to live a productive life, we should not be surprised by the negative outcomes that are certain to occur. However, $40,000 -$60,000 a year to keep a person in jail could be better spent on long-term strategies to change this by creating opportunities and helping people become self-reliant so they don’t have to turn to crime, drugs, etc.

We need the political will to implement policies and programs that support people in proactive, dignified, and productive ways. We do not need more punitive policies, jails and penalties. A solid base of stable families and individuals is to the benefit of our WHOLE community and economy.

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