All Research & Analysis

Broken Ground

Why America Keeps Building More Jails and What It Can Do Instead

Jail construction has vastly expanded America’s capacity to incarcerate people. In 1970, there were 243,000 jail beds in the United States, but by 2017, there were 915,100. This report explores the persistence of jail expansion by examining a convenience sample of 77 counties in 31 states that considered or pursued jail expansion between 2000 and 2...

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  • Chris Mai, Mikelina Belaineh, Ram Subramanian, Jacob Kang-Brown
November 18, 2019
Publication

Crisis Response Services for People with Mental Illnesses or Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities

A Review of the Literature on Police-based and Other First Response Models

The Vera Institute of Justice (Vera) launched Serving Safely in May 2018 as a national initiative to improve police responses to people with serious mental illnesses (SMI) and intellectual/developmental disabilities (I/DD). The initiative’s Research and Evaluation Committee developed this literature review as a first step toward creating a research...

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  • Leah Pope
October 30, 2019
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Gatekeepers

The Role of Police in Ending Mass Incarceration

Police in America arrest millions of people each year, and the likelihood that arrest will lead to jail incarceration has increased steadily. Ending mass incarceration and repairing its extensive collateral consequences thus must begin by focusing on the front end of the system: police work. Recognizing the roughly 18,000 police agencies around the...

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  • Rebecca Neusteter, Ram Subramanian, Jennifer Trone, Mawia Khogali, Cindy Reed
August 12, 2019
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Incapacitated, Indigent, and Alone

Meeting Guardianship and Decision Support Needs in New York

In 2005, the Vera Institute of Justice and New York State’s Office of Court Administration initiated The Guardianship Project (TGP) to serve as court-appointed agency guardian to a vulnerable, largely indigent population—elders and persons with disabilities lacking family or other supports—thus enabling them to live as independently as possible. Th...

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  • Pamela B. Teaster, Erica F. Wood, John Holt, Kimberly George
August 08, 2019
Publication

The 911 Call Processing System

A Review of the Literature as it Relates to Policing

Police spend an inordinate amount of time responding to 911 calls for service. While most of these calls are unrelated to crimes in progress, police often respond with the tool that is most familiar and expedient to them: enforcement. This exhausts police resources and exposes countless people to avoidable criminal justice system contacts. There i...

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  • Rebecca Neusteter, Maris Mapolski, Mawia Khogali, Megan O'Toole
July 19, 2019
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A Piece of the Puzzle

State Financial Aid for Incarcerated Students

Postsecondary education in prison puts people on a path toward a brighter future by disrupting the cycle of poverty and incarceration. But it has not been offered at scale due to the numerous barriers—including the 1994 ban on Pell Grants to people in prison—that prevent students and postsecondary institutions from accessing state and federal fundi...

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  • Lauren Hobby, Brian Walsh, Ruth Delaney
July 11, 2019
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