Criminal Justice

February 6, 2021 by Kelly Allen
W.Va. Puts More Women Behind Bars Even as Population Drops

Martinsburg Journal - Over the last 40 years female incarceration in West Virginia has exploded, growing by a staggering 2,731 percent from 1978 to 2019. Over the same period, the state’s population has declined by nearly seven percent. What could explain such exponential growth in female incarceration as our overall population has declined? Read the…

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January 30, 2021 by Quenton King
Crowded Jails Costing Counties More Than They can Pay

Charleston Gazette-Mail - West Virginia is incarcerating more people than its regional jail system is meant to hold, and it is costing some county governments more money than they can pay. Read the full article. At least 10 counties in West Virginia are more than 90 days past due on a combined $9 million in…

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January 28, 2021 by WVCBP
Criminal Justice Reform Summit Focusing on Legislative Goals

West Virginia MetroNews - With the 2021 legislative session in West Virginia just weeks away, criminal justice reform is being discussed and priorities are taking shape during a summit in West Virginia. Read the full article. American Friends Service Committee, WV Council of Churches, WV Center on Budget and Policy, ACLU-WV, and Appalachian Prison Book…

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January 21, 2021 by Quenton King
Criminal Justice Priorities for the 2021 Legislative Session

February 10 marks the beginning of West Virginia’s 85th Legislature, and with this session lawmakers will have the opportunity to build upon their 2020 criminal justice reform efforts. The following are the criminal justice priorities for the West Virginia Center on Budget and Policy. Immediately Protect Incarcerated People and Correctional Facility Staff Evidence is clear…

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January 17, 2021 by WVCBP
Regional Jail Fees Weigh Heavy on Counties

Dominion Post - Counties in West Virginia are responsible for a lot of bills — including the cost of housing inmates from the county being held in regional jails. That makes the 81% increase in inmate population from 2000-2019 a problem for some counties. Read the full article. That population increase was one finding in…

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January 11, 2021 by Quenton King
W.Va. Leaders Address Correctional Staff Reluctance, Prisoner Access To COVID-19 Vaccine

West Virginia Public Broadcasting - More than half of the correctional employees in West Virginia have opted out of taking the COVID-19 vaccine, despite being prioritized by state health officials. Read the full article. They work with more than 9,800 incarcerated people who have not been prioritized in the state’s vaccine rollout plan, against a…

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January 7, 2021 by WVCBP
West Virginia Criminal Justice Reform Summit – Poverty and the Criminal Justice System

Registration is live! Over the course of four days, participants at the West Virginia Criminal Justice Reform Summit will attend sessions exploring the significance of poverty before, during, and after incarceration. In addition to a wide variety of panels, there will be skill-building workshops as well as ample opportunity for participants to connect with one another.…

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January 6, 2021 by WVCBP
New Brief Highlights Explosive Growth of Jail Incarceration in West Virginia and Counties’ Difficulty Paying Their Regional Jail Bills

For Immediate Release: January 06, 2021Contact: Renee Alves, 559-916-5939 Charleston, WV - Between 2000 and 2019, West Virginia’s jail population increased by a staggering 81 percent, from approximately 2,853 inmates to 5,172, even as the state’s population shrunk in the same period. This follows the longer trend of mass incarceration in West Virginia and the United States…

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January 6, 2021 by Quenton King
Overcrowded and Overburdened: West Virginia Counties Struggle to Pay Regional Jail Bills

Introduction Because county governments must ultimately pay the costs associated with keeping people behind bars in their local jails, the explosion of county jail incarceration is driving enormous and growing pressure on county budgets. County spending on jails is rising, and the amount billed to counties by the Regional Jail Authority is rising even more…

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