I need your help.
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I co-founded the Prison Policy Initiative to put the problem of mass incarceration — and the perverse incentives that fuel it — on the national agenda. Over the last 16 years, our campaigns have protected our democracy from the prison system and protected the poorest families in this country from the predatory prison telephone industry. Our reports untangle the statistics and recruit new allies.

But now, more than ever, we need your help to put data & compassion into the conversation. Any gift you can make today will be matched by other donors and go twice as far.

Thank you.
—Peter Wagner, Executive DirectorDonate

by Peter Wagner, April 23, 2004

coverReuters’ journalist Alan Elsner’s new book about the criminal justice system, Gates of Injustice: The Crisis in America’s Prisons is a powerful examination of how our prison system grew out of control. The book combines first hand reporting with a detailed analysis of the larger trends that made the U.S. the world’s largest incarcerator without any gain in public safety.

Gates of Injustice is both an introduction to prisons and a detailed indictment of why they don’t work. The book contains a number of powerful (and true) facts that we hadn’t been aware of.

Near and dear to the hearts of Prison Policy Initiative staff, Elsner discusses in the chapter on rural prisons how prisoners are counted in the census and he calls for changing how the Census counts the incarcerated.

This timely book is a must read for everyone interesting in making the world a better — and safer — place.

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