The Public Strongly Supports Cost-Effective Alternatives to Incarceration

Polling and surveys on the criminal justice system and reform efforts

The Public Supports Alternatives to Incarceration
Last Updated October 21, 2016

Voters’ top priority is keeping communities safe, but large majorities also believe that the nation imprisons too many people for too long.  A body of national- and state-level public opinion research dating to 2010 has found overwhelming support across political parties, regions, ages, genders, and racial/ethnic groups for policy changes that shift nonviolent offenders from prison to more effective, less expensive alternatives.

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