Over the past 30 years, the United States has become the world's leader in incarceration with 2.2 million people currently in the nation's prisons or jails. Harsher laws and longer sentences have led to an explosive increase in prison over-crowding and economic burdens for state governments; with little evidence of increased public safety. Efforts to ease the financial pressures on municipalities have given rise to government contracted for-profit prison companies. Once considered a free-market solution to the prison crises, the privatization of incarceration in the U.S. has raised urgent moral questions about the policies and practices of the criminal justice system and the nature and doing of justice.
With presentations from well-known public figures, policy-makers, moral scholars, religious leaders and criminal justice professionals, this multidisciplinary conference explored the nature and ethical implications of jailing for profit, including:
- Do public-private prison contracts that incentivize high incarceration rates have a perverse effect on police and judicial actions?
- Can we morally justify the human cost of money-saving practices that lead to overcrowding, unsafe, and demoralizing prison conditions for inmates and prison staff?
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FREE CLE CREDITS AVAILABLE: This conference is appropriate for newly admitted and experienced attorneys and is approved for a maximum of 2 transitional and non-transitional ethics credit hours.