United States Prison System
The Incarceration in the United States consists of the prisons of the federal government and the individual states together. In addition to these civil prisons with different security standards and responsibilities, there are also US military prisons .
About two-thirds (1,504,150 people) of the 2,239,800 detainees in the United States as of December 31, 2011 are subject to federal or state control ( prisons ). About a third (735,601) are held in local prisons ( jails ), of which 15% are in prisons operated by private security companies. 92,845 prisoners were held in juvenile prisons, 2,135 in prisons on the Indian reservations, 1,651 in military prisons, 9,957 in prisons of the customs and immigration authorities and 13,576 in so-called US territories facilities .
With 706 per 100,000 inhabitants (2011), the USA has the second highest incarceration rate in the world after the Seychelles (799 prisoners / 100,000 inhabitants). For comparison (as of 2016): Russia 420, People's Republic of China 118, Germany 77 prisoners per 100,000 inhabitants. The largest part of the pronounced sentences punishes violent crimes (624,900), property offenses (253,000) and drug-related crime (265,000) (Statistics 2002).
If one looks at the number of prisoners according to their belonging to an ethnic group (referred to as race in the United States ), clear differences become apparent. On December 31, 2008, the following were in custody in state and federal prisons:
- 4,347 out of 100,000 black men and 260 out of 100,000 black women
- 1,771 out of 100,000 male Latinos and 133 out of 100,000 female Latinos
- 678 out of 100,000 white men and 91 out of 100,000 white women
Overall, 1.65% of black US residents versus 0.27% of white US residents are in state and federal prisons.
Because felony to 3088 to find the death penalty to convicted persons in US prisons, 39 were convicted in 2013 executed , most of them in Texas . 4,863 people have been executed in the United States since 1930.
At the end of 2011, one in 45 Americans (2.2% of the population) was either in prison (2.2 million), or on parole (4.0) or on parole (0.85). The proportion of female inmates rose to 7%. Between 1995 and 2003, the number of those detained for drug offenses increased by 49%.
The age of criminal responsibility begins much earlier in the United States than in Germany, for example. In most states , 7-year-olds can be held accountable for violating a criminal law. In 2000, 133,610 people under the age of 18 were held in detention centers and juvenile detention centers in the US. In 2003 children under the age of 11 were also accommodated in 117 American juvenile detention centers. That same year, 33 states allowed mentally ill children and adolescents to be detained even if they had not violated criminal law.
The Federal Bureau of Prisons (BOP) in Washington, DC was established in 1930 to manage 13,000 prisoners in 11 state prisons. It reports to the US Department of Justice. The BOP operates 134 prisons and administers approximately 85% of federal prisoners with 35,000 employees (1980: 10,000) (another 15% are in state, rural or city prisons for violating local or state laws ). The BOP divides the United States into six regions, each with a regional office that manages its various facilities.
|CCC||Community Correction Center||half-open prisons for the care of release candidates|
|CI or DC||Contract facilities, detention center||Private prisons, used for low security and special population groups such as criminal foreigners|
|FCC||Federal Correctional Complex||divided into Federal Correctional Institutions (FCI) medium security level and United States Penitentiaries (USP)|
|FDC||Federal Detention Center||Prisons of all levels|
|FPC||Federal Prison Camp||Minimum security prisons|
|FTC||Federal Transfer Center||Oklahoma City, Oklahoma Central Transfer and Discharge Center|
|MCC or MDC||Metropolitan Correctional Center , Metropolitan Detention Center||City prisons of all security levels|
|MCFP, FMC||Medical Center for Federal Prisoners, Federal Medical Center||Detention hospitals|
|STA, MSTC||Staff Training Academy, Management and Specialty Training Center||Training centers for personnel|
The various prison facilities vary in their security levels, which differ in the type of detention as well as in the armament and the way the staff deal with the prisoners. Five levels are currently in use, the highest and the newest ( Administrative Maximum (ADX) ) having existed since 1994 and being considered a special facility.
Includes special facilities (MCCs, MDCs, FDCs, FTCs, FMCs and USPs) with all security levels.
ADX is the highest level of security for the most dangerous inmates such as serial killers and terrorists with inmates like Theodore Kaczynski , Terry Nichols , Zacarias Moussaoui and (before his execution) Timothy McVeigh . The prison conditions are extremely harsh due to total isolation (see also ADX Florence Federal Prison ).
Door closure controlled centrally by a separate security center with single cell accommodation. Some of the USP prisons allow people to stay in closed cell wings or outside facilities during the day. Freedom of movement is restricted accordingly and prisoners are accompanied by staff.
Centrally controlled door closing with single cell accommodation. Each cell has its own toilet and sink. Detainees can leave the cells to participate in rehabilitation programs or to work. All facilities are generally double-barred, equipped with watchtowers and controlled by armed personnel.
Accommodation in dormitories with bunk beds and shared toilets. The dormitories are locked at night and, like the movement of prisoners, are temporarily controlled by prison staff. The facilities (FCIs) themselves are double barred and guarded.
Prisoners in facilities of this level pose only a low security risk to the public and are generally assessed as non-violent. The accommodation corresponds to the low security level, but is only slightly secured and monitored by fewer staff. The facilities (FPCs) are simply fenced in, sometimes not at all in rural areas, and are monitored without patrols. The detainees often work for nearby public institutions such as military bases; some have internet connections in the cells.
The US incarceration rate, at 706 prisoners per 100,000 population, is two and a half to eleven times higher than in the European Union , where it ranged from 65 ( Slovenia ) to 283 ( Estonia ) in 2010 . Iceland has the lowest rate in Europe with 52 incarcerated people per 100,000 inhabitants, and Ukraine comes first with 406 ( The Howard League for Penal Reform, January 2005 ).
Prison sentences in the US are very selective. There are 2.5 Hispanics and 5.8 African Americans for every white imprisoned. Over the past decade, the incarceration rate of women has increased 646 percent, with much of that increase attributable to African American women. This is justified u. a. with the much tighter social control that the African American population is subject to. Drug policy, which forcibly punishes certain offenses with imprisonment, and the criminalization of illegal immigration have also contributed significantly to this increase. Around 2015, of the total of around 2.3 million prisoners in the US, around 350,000 or 15% were Muslim, a percentage many times that compared to the Muslim population of around 1.1% in the US .
In her bestseller The New Jim Crow (2010), lawyer and civil rights activist Michelle Alexander puts forward the thesis that the large number of prison inmates - unique in the western world - and, above all, the massive incarceration of black men as part of the " war on drugs " a deliberate mechanism to oppress African Americans. She draws parallels to the history of slavery in the United States and to the policy of segregation practiced up until the 1960s . In addition to the prison sentence itself, she particularly identifies the stigmatization of former prisoners as “criminals” and the associated loss of numerous rights (such as the right to vote) as a method of social exclusion.
A strong impetus to liberalize the US prison system came from the student revolt of the 1960s . President Richard Nixon called the prisons "universities of crime," and Rolling Stone magazine declared the 1970s the "decade of the prisoner" and invited political prisoners to write letters to the editor.
- Survivors Guide to Prison , 102-minute documentary film by Matthew Cooke (United States 2018)
- Michelle Alexander: The New Jim Crow. Mass Incarceration in the Age of Color Blindness . The New Press, New York 2010, ISBN 978-1-59558-643-8 .
- Angela Y. Davis : A Society Without Prisons? The United States Prison Industrial Complex , Black Friday 2004, ISBN 3-937623-32-9 .
- Elizabeth Hinton: From the War on Poverty to the War on Crime. The Making of Mass Incarceration in America . Harvard University Press, Cambridge 2016, ISBN 978-0-674-73723-5 .
- Rebecca M. McLennan, The Crisis of Imprisonment: Protest, Politics, and the Making of the American Penal State, 1776-1941. Cambridge University, Cambridge 2008, ISBN 978-0-521-53783-4 .
- US Department of Justice, Statistics Bureau
- US State Prison Administration
- http://www.howardleague.org/ NGO on prison reform (English)
- US Civil Rights Group
- US Bureau of Justice Statistics: Matthew Cooper, BJS Intern. Table 9 on page 8 has the number of inmates in state or federal public prison facilities, local jails, US territories, military facilities, US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) owned and contracted facilities, jails in Indian country, and juvenile facilities. Table 8 on page 8 has the incarceration rates for 2000, 2007, and 2008.
- US Bureau of Justice Statistics: Prisoners in 2008, Washington, DC 2009, p. 8 tab. 8, p. 36 tab. 14
- Office of Justice Programs, Bureau of Justice Statistics Correctional populations - To Key facts at a glance chart ed. 2000 ( Memento of the original dated December 4, 2010 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link has been inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice.
- 1 in every 32 US adults behind bars, on probation or on parole in 2005 ( Memento from September 27, 2008 in the Internet Archive )
- Old enough to be a criminal?
- Population in Group Quarters by Type, Sex and Age (Excel file; 43 kB); Positive Youth Development, Juvenile Justice, and Delinquency Prevention ( Memento of the original from September 27, 2008 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. ; Report: Juvenile jails being substituted for mental hospitals ; Kaiser Daily Health Policy Report ( Memento of the original from September 28, 2006 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link was automatically inserted and not yet checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice.
- Eurostat: EU crime statistics 2005–2007 ( Memento of the original from March 3, 2014 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. (PDF; 118 kB)
- lecture series at Connecticut College
- Malise Ruthven , in: Jonathan Curiel: Islam in America . IB Tauris, London 2015. ISBN 978-1-84885-598-4 .
- Michelle Alexander: The New Jim Crow. Mass Incarceration in the Age of Color Blindness . The New Press, New York 2010, ISBN 978-1-59558-643-8 ; on the content of the book and on the public debate around it, see en.wikipedia: The New Jim Crow and interview with the author ( memento of the original from 23 September 2016 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link has been inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. and article by the author at huffingtonpost.com
- Rolling Stone of January 20, 1972, p. 34 f.