Blog

Women in Prison: Fewer but growing

While Michigan has seen its overall prison population steadily fall over the past years, this not been the case for incarcerated women. It’s important to note that women still comprise a very small percentage of the state’s overall prison population — just 5.4 percent. Unlike the male population, which is spread out among nearly 30 [...]

2019-05-09T12:19:26-04:00May 9th, 2019|Categories: Blog, Michigan Department of Corrections (MDOC)|

The power of story

We held a meeting with the Michigan Coalition Against Homelessness at the Heartside of Michigan United Way in Grand Rapids and each of our meeting guests took a few minutes to tell their stories. There was a 25-year-old young woman who had been in and out of prison on drug charges, and now needed to [...]

2019-04-04T16:38:29-04:00April 4th, 2019|Categories: Blog, Community reinvestment, Reentry, Trauma|

Old, sick and expensive: The graying of Michigan’s prison population

Michigan doesn’t have the death penalty, but that doesn’t mean people don’t die in our state’s prisons. In 2017 alone, 106 people died while they were incarcerated in Michigan, according to the Michigan Department of Corrections’ Statistical Report. Many of them were receiving treatment for medical conditions. Things like cancer, Alzheimer’s disease and the advanced [...]

2019-04-22T16:16:57-04:00March 21st, 2019|Categories: Blog, Corrections budget, Elderly, Lifers|

Medically Frail Parole gets a second chance

Just a few months ago, it appeared as though legislators had no appetite for creating medically frail parole for incarcerated people in Michigan who can no longer accomplish regular daily tasks such as feeding or dressing themselves. After being diluted last year, the medically frail parole proposal finally made it out of the Michigan House [...]

2019-03-07T16:38:02-04:00March 7th, 2019|Categories: Blog, Elderly, Lifers, Michigan Department of Corrections (MDOC), Parole|

The long haul: why long sentences hurt everyone in Michigan

Michigan has seen its prison population fall 23 percent since 2006, when we recorded the largest number of incarcerated people in our state at 51,515. That’s the good news. However, this decline has been offset by a steady increase in the length of stay. Michigan’s prison system has one of the longest average prison sentences [...]

2019-02-27T16:38:41-04:00February 27th, 2019|Categories: Blog, Lifers, Michigan Department of Corrections (MDOC), Sentencing|

How short stays have a lasting impact on Michigan prison policy

Here’s a paradox: Michigan is known around the country for having the one of the longest prison sentences in the country, but even so, more than seven out of every 10 people committed to prison in 2017 were sent to serve short sentences of fewer than three years. How can this be, and what does [...]

2019-02-20T11:59:45-04:00February 20th, 2019|Categories: Blog, Michigan Department of Corrections (MDOC), Sentencing|

Fewer people are going to prison — here’s why

We know by now that Michigan’s prison population is falling. From the high of 51,515 people reached in 2006, our state’s prison population has fallen 23 percent to 39,666 as of the end of 2017. To understand why that is happening, it’s good to examine how that population figure can change. Two things affect that [...]

2019-02-14T14:14:07-04:00February 14th, 2019|Categories: Blog, Michigan Department of Corrections (MDOC), Sentencing|

Statistics tell the stories

The Michigan Department of Corrections released its 2017 Statistical Report on Jan. 23, 2019. It releases statistical reports annually, and each year they contain hundreds of pages of facts, figures, charts and tables that help paint the picture of Michigan’s criminal justice system. The information covers topics such as how many people are newly sentenced [...]

Let’s work together

The political landscape has been noisy lately. If you read the news or watch it on television, it would be easy to think that there’s no room for politicians on the left and right to find agreement on anything. On topics as diverse as health policy, the environment, education and immigration, it often sounds like [...]

2019-02-07T15:53:13-04:00February 7th, 2019|Categories: Blog|