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Overpopulation of Prisons Essay

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For the past thirty years, the prison population has increased substantially. The Bureau of Prisons (BOP) has documented that its population has increased 60 percent since the year 2000. Increases in inmate population are causing many prisons throughout the United States to operate over maximum capacity. Several jails throughout the United States have experienced protests due to overcrowding conditions. Many theories argue the reason of overcrowding and possible solutions. It is not my intention to prove why the Bureau of Prisons (BOP) and jails like Metropolitan Dentation Center (MDC) are overcrowded, but rather how the over populated facilities affect inmates, corrections officers, and the taxpayer.
In New Mexico there is currently a suit known as the McClendon lawsuit. This lawsuit accuses the Bernalillo County Dentition Center, now known as the Metropolitan Dentition Center (MDC), of violations regarding inmate constitutional rights due to conditions of overcrowding and unsafe living conditions. This lawsuit was filed in 1995 and still remains in litigation today. This lawsuit claims that inmates at the jail were denied adequate health care, safe housing, and proper sanitation facilities. MDC is not the only jail that experiences overcrowding. Many states are currently being sued by inmates for dire conditions at the facilities they were incarcerated. The increase in lawsuits file has made it necessary for the government to pass and sign the Prison Reform Litigation Act (PLRA) on April 26, 1996. The PLRA weeds out frivolous lawsuits that would otherwise take up time and money.
In an article by Matthew Rowland, “Prison cells are double- and triple-bunked, making it more likely that some inmate misconduct will go undetected an...


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...ars to maintain prisons and house inmates. Prison overcrowding affects everyone. It is a domino effect.



Works Cited
Baca, J. S. (2010). Coming into Language. In P. Houlihan, A. Pope, & G. Rhodes, Mercury Reader (pp. 9-16). Boston, MA: Pearson Learning Solutions.
McKee, C. (2013, April 21). Settlement conference ordered in MDC overcrowding lawsuit. KRQE News.
McMillion, R. (2012, Dec). Growing Pains. ABA Journal, 98(12).
Pfaff, J. F. (2008). Criminology The Empirics of Prison Growth: A Critical Review and Path Forward. The Journal of Criminal Law & Criminology, 98(2), 547-619.
Rowland, M. G. (2013, Sept). Too Many Going Back, Not Enough Getting Out? Supervision Violators, Probation Supervision, and Overcrowding in the Federal Bureau of Prions. Federal Probation, 77(2), 12.
Torres, R. (2009, July 17). Letter to the Albuquerque Journal Editor. Albuquerque Journal.




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