Delaware has an incarceration rate of 631 per 100,000 people (including prisons, jails, immigration detention, and juvenile justice facilities), meaning that it locks up a higher percentage of its people than almost any democracy on earth. Read on to learn more about who is incarcerated in Delaware and why.
Today, Delaware’s incarceration rates stand out internationally
In the U.S., incarceration extends beyond prisons and local jails to include other systems of confinement. The U.S. and state incarceration rates in this graph include people held by these other parts of the justice system, so they may be slightly higher than the commonly reported incarceration rates that only include prisons and jails. Details on the data are available in States of Incarceration: The Global Context. We also have a version of this graph focusing on the incarceration of women.
People of color are overrepresented in prisons and jails
See also our detailed graphs about Whites
in Delaware prisons.
Delaware's criminal justice system is more than just its prisons
The high cost of being incarcerated in Delaware
Prisons and jails in Delaware are increasingly shifting the cost of incarceration to people behind bars and their families, hiding the true economic costs of mass incarceration:
Delaware is one of 15 prison systems that does not have a policy making hand sanitizer widely available or providing free hygiene products — like soap — to incarcerated people.
Delaware failed to utilize one of the most obvious, and easiest, tools for reducing the prison population — stopping prison admissions for technical violations of probation and parole (which are not crimes).