Vera Institute of Justice to Unveil Updated Incarceration Trends Website


Media contact: Claire Bélanger, 585-730-1218,

WHAT: On Thursday, December 16 at 10:00 a.m. EST, experts from the Vera Institute of Justice will host a briefing and presentation of their website on trends in incarceration, which will now include an analysis of more than five decades of data on incarceration. local prisons and state prisons at the national, state and departmental levels. This brings many data points up to date in the spring of 2021 and represents the most comprehensive snapshot yet of the growth of mass incarceration in states, counties, and urban and rural areas.

The Incarceration Trends Project points out that the harms of mass incarceration have not been inflicted in the same way, to the detriment of communities across the United States. The country’s largest cities once had the highest incarceration rates, but over the past several decades prison incarcerations and state prison admissions have declined on major subways as they have increased rapidly in small towns and rural communities. The updated analysis presented in the Incarceration Trends Project highlights that the disproportionate criminalization and incarceration of blacks and Latinxes is also most pronounced in rural counties, as is the increase in incarceration of women.

The newly visualized data also shows the rebound in prison and prison populations after an unprecedented 14% drop in incarceration in the first half of 2020 (from 2.1 million to 1.8 million people) in response to the spread of COVID-19 . In the spring of 2021, decarcerations in state prisons were at a standstill and the prison population continued to increase.

During the briefing, Vera’s experts will walk through the tool and the underlying data sources and discuss the analysis and visualizations of incarceration trends. A question-and-answer session will immediately follow the walkthrough.

WHEN: Thursday, December 16 at 10:00 a.m. EST

OR: register here

WHO: Jasmine Heiss, Director of the In Our Backyards initiative, Vera Institute of Justice

Jacob Kang-Brown, Senior Research Associate, Vera Institute of Justice

Bea Halbach-Singh, Research Associate, Vera Institute of Justice

Jason Q. Ng, Senior Data Scientist, Vera Institute of Justice


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