Due to budget constraint in addition with escalating prison population, several U.S states are thinking of altering their criminal codes. This problem is also being faced by various states in the South. Keeping this in mind, altogether 15 states have enacted changes and the rest are also thinking of doing the same very soon.
Changes in criminal codes have come in the form of reduction or elimination of prison times. This will be applied for some property and drug crimes. Also it has been proposed that the drug addicts will get treatment instead of putting them in jail. In this scenario, states which have already reduced prison time include Alabama, Colorado, Kentucky, Pennsylvania and Rhode Island. Prison time however has been eliminated or reduced for parole and prison violations. Instead of longer prison times now the perpetrator will be doing community services and the like. These sentences will be applicable for low-level, low-risk delinquents.
Mainly the increasing prison population is due to the drug addicts. The war on drugs by the U.S states has put many drug offenders behind bars and also many low-level offenders are occupying almost 25 percent of the world’s prisoners. This is a good step and the reforms will help the country in the right direction to recover from its exploding prison populations.