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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
This graph shows that, beginning the early 1990s, the Texas imprisonment rate skyrocketed above the national imprisonment rate. Between 1993 and 1998, the national rate increased by only about 100 imprisoned people per 100,000 residents, but the Texas rate increased by over 300 imprisoned people per 100,000 residents.

Data Source: Compiled by the Prison Policy Initiative from the Bureau of Justice Statistics Corrections Statistical Analysis Tool (CSAT). (Graph: Rachel Gandy, 2015)

This graph originally appeared in Explaining Texas' overnight prison boom.

Throughout the 1980s, the Texas imprisonment rate closely matched the national imprisonment rate. But between 1993 and 1998, the Texas imprisonment rate almost doubled, causing Texas’ total custody population to quickly escalate.

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