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Sen. Jeff Brandes: Black defendants spend more time in jail for the same crimes.

Thursday, February 20, 2020  
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Not long ago, the Council on Criminal Justice, a nonpartisan national think tank, released a report showing that racial and ethnic disparities had declined across prison, jail, probation and parole populations in the United States.

As someone working for increased public safety and a more effective criminal justice system, and as a member of the Council’s Board of Trustees, I was heartened by this news. Among the highlights: In 2000, black people were imprisoned for drug crimes at 15 times the rate of whites; by 2016, that ratio was just under 5-to-1. Among women during the same time frame, the black-white disparity in imprisonment also fell by two-thirds, dropping from 6-to-1 to 2-to-1.

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