Explore how our reliance on prison to solve social problems is creating a national crisis, and how the state of Kentucky is trying to respond, in this video adapted from FRONTLINE: Prison State. Kentucky spends more than $15 million each year incarcerating people from one Louisville housing project, Beecher Terrace. One juvenile justice commissioner suggests that we are incarcerating young people merely for their poor performance in school, problems in the home, or their unwanted behavior. A law professor states that we have invested in incarceration instead of in systems designed to help people stay out of jail and prison. In just over a decade, Kentucky’s prison growth rate jumped by 45 percent and spending by almost 220 percent—to nearly half a billion dollars. This prompted reform that includes the early release of nonviolent offenders in order to save money. This resource is part of the FRONTLINE collection.
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