Articles on Imprisonment costs

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Electronic monitoring typically involves fitting offenders with tamper-proof bracelets to monitor whether they are abiding by conditions imposed on them. Flickr/Chris Yarzab

Electronic innovation can help fix an archaic, crowded prison system

The days of prison, an 18th-century industrial institution, as the justice system's dominant form of punishment may be numbered. Electronic monitoring of offenders is one promising alternative.
Prisoners are released every day, but we don’t know how many. The lack of basic data is an obstacle to effective services that would minimise their risk of re-offending. AAP/Dean Lewins/Image digitally altered

Our $3b-a-year system is flying blind in supporting ex-prisoners

We simply don't know how many prisoners are released each year, nor their demographic characteristics. As a result, we cannot tailor services that would reduce ex-prisoners' risks of re-offending.
Most of Tasmania’s relatively small prison population is housed at Risdon Prison Complex. Wikimedia Commons/'Risdon' by Wiki ian

State of imprisonment: Tasmania escapes ‘law and order’ infection

Imprisonment rates in Tasmania have steadily declined over the past decade -- the only state or territory where this has happened. That is a result of progressive and effective corrections policies.
The ACT’s new prison did not take long to fill up, which has tested the capacity of corrections authorities to live up to their stated high ideals. AAP/Lukas Coch

State of imprisonment: can ACT achieve a ‘human rights’ prison?

The ACT's first prison opened in 2009 with lofty ideals, but rising prisoner numbers and high rates of re-imprisonment are presenting a severe test of the capital's reformist corrections agenda.
Premier Colin Barnett addresses a rally outside Parliament House, the latest in a long history of protests at Indigenous deaths in custody and high rates of incarceration. AAP/Newzulu/Jesse Roberts

State of imprisonment: lopsided incarceration rates blight West

Indigenous people are jailed at a rate 18 times that of non-Aboriginal Western Australian adults, but the overall rate is high too. The great costs of this punitive approach yield few clear benefits.
Queensland’s reliance on high-security facilities to house a growing prison population may be linked to the nation’s highest rates of return for prisoners on parole. AAP/Dave Hunt

State of imprisonment: out one day, back the next in Queensland

Queensland's rates of imprisonment had been falling, but have undergone a sharp reversal - much of it driven by the nation's highest rates of return by prisoners released into the community.
In the past decade, the number of people ending up in South Australian prison cells has grown at seven times the rate of the state population. AAP/South Australian Correctional Services Department

State of imprisonment: South Australia’s prisoner numbers soar, with just 10% of budget for rehab

Since 2004, the number of prisoners in South Australia has risen seven times faster than the state's net population growth – and nearly doubled its rate of locking up Indigenous Australians.
In recent times, Victoria has reverted to the punitive approach that once filled the Old Melbourne Gaol, with little thought for the long-term consequences. Flickr/Eva

State of imprisonment: Victoria is leading the nation backwards

Victoria was once characterised by low imprisonment rates and innovative corrections policy. The state now has Australia's highest rate of growth in imprisonment.
The human and financial costs to Australia of following America’s lead in imprisoning more and more people are huge. Shutterstock/BortN66

Prisons policy is turning Australia into the second nation of captives

The US is the great incarcerator, spending US$60 billion a year on prisons, and Australia is sliding down the same path. The solution? Confine jails almost exclusively to sexual and violent offenders.

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