Press Releases

Movement to End Mass Incarceration Explored as a Symbol That Can Inform Larger Political, Sociological Questions The First Step Act (FSA), signed into law in 2018, contributed significantly to reversing the incarceration frenzy that had characterized U.S. policy for decades. In a new book, Reform Nation: The First Step Act and the Movement to End […]

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Body-worn cameras (BWCs) have become increasingly common in U.S. police departments, but we know little about their use in the field, including the factors related to whether and why police activate them. A new study examined the prevalence and correlates of BWC activation in Phoenix, Arizona. The study found that departmental policy may be the […]

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Adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) are potentially traumatic events that occur from birth to age 17. A new study examined the effect of ACEs on jurors’ sentencing decisions in hypothetical death penalty cases. The study found that defense testimony elicited jurors’ leniency, largely through their responses to ACE evidence. The study, by researchers at Minnesota State […]

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Naming a law after a victim of crime can boost support for the law by symbolically positioning supporters on the side of the victim. As efforts to pass so-called apostrophe laws (e.g., Caylee’s Laws, Megan’s Law) rise, a new study examined whether naming legislation after a victim boosts public backing for such laws and the […]

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Fostering stable employment for people released from prison is an important issue for social justice and public safety, as well as for economic and workforce development. But studies on the efficacy of in-prison work programs designed to improve incarcerated people’s chances of getting jobs after they are released have yielded ambiguous results. Researchers conducted a […]

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Studies suggest that religion can help prisoners cope with prison life and that it may affect the likelihood of recidivism. A new longitudinal study examined how male prisoners’ religious beliefs affected their reentry into the community. The study found that men with stable or increasing religious beliefs did not have better reentry-related outcomes than men […]

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A new study examined the impact of COVID-19 and George Floyd’s death on police work in the Tempe, Arizona, police department. The study examined weekly trends in crime and officer activities, as well as footage from body-worn cameras. The impact of the pandemic and Floyd’s death was mixed and varied by type of crime, with […]

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Numerous studies have examined the coercive nature of prisons, but few have considered the role of in-prison experiences (e.g., confinement in restrictive housing) and time served in prison in incarcerated people’s perceptions of corrections officers’ fairness. A new study examined whether in-prison experiences among a nationally representative sample of inmates varied in their effect across […]

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A new study sought to determine the effects of a college-in-prison program, the Bard Prison Initiative (BPI). The study found a large and significant reduction in recidivism rates across racial groups among those who participated in the program. It also found that participants with higher levels of participation had even lower rates of recidivism. In […]

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The deaths of unarmed citizens and the ensuing Black Lives Matter and Defund the Police movements have raised questions about the scope of U.S. policing. A new study examined police officers’ expectations for policing, considering how they perceive their role based on divergent ideas and demands from the public, agencies, and themselves. The study found […]

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