Despite being roughly 5% of the world's population, the United States is home to nearly 25% of the world’s prisoners. And since 1970, data shows America's incarcerated population has increased by nearly 600% – far outpacing population growth and crime rates.
Today, as you read this sentence, 2.3 million people are incarcerated inside a jail and prison, including nearly half a million Americans who have not been convicted of a crime but are forced to stay behind bars because they can't afford bail money - with Black, Latino, LGBTQ, and poor communities continuing to be hit the hardest.
But awareness of America's prison problem is rising - and we now have the opportunity to flip that awareness into change and create a system that's more fair, moral, and human.
Our next opportunity to change laws (and court appointments) for the better is the 2018 Midterm Elections on November 6. But that's just the beginning. True, comprehensive criminal justice reform is an ongoing struggle - one many activists and organizers have been fighting for years.
To aide in the fight for reform, we've created Fix the System - a resource center for criminal justice reform to provide you direct actions, facts, stats and info on how you can play and important role in ending mass incarceration, cash bail, abusive police practices, and post-release disenfranchisement of people with a criminal record.
Understand the problem and potential solutions better with these helpful facts, stats, data, and focus issues related to criminal justice and prison reform.
We created Brightest because FAQs only go so far and real change requires real action out in the streets. To find your nearest local actions and ways to get involved, visit our search tool or text 'SEARCH' to 952-777-7715.