All Research & Analysis

Rethinking Restrictive Housing

The Vera Institute of Justice partnered with five prison and jail systems to assess how they use restrictive housing—also known as segregation or solitary confinement—in their facilities and to recommend ways to safely reduce that use. This report presents highlights of Vera’s findings and recommendations for ways these systems (and others motivated to reform) can reduce their use of restrictive housing and employ safe, effective alternatives. It also provides updates on the progress these systems have made to date.

Special Report
  • Léon Digard, Sara Sullivan, Elena Vanko
May 23, 2018
Special Report

An Unjust Burden

The Disparate Treatment of Black Americans in the Criminal Justice System

The evidence for racial disparities in the criminal justice system is well documented. The disproportionate racial impact of certain laws and policies, as well as biased decision making by justice system actors, leads to higher rates of arrest and incarceration in low-income communities of color. However, there is no evidence that these widely disp...

Publication
  • Elizabeth Kai Hinton, LeShae Henderson, Cindy Reed
May 03, 2018
Publication

Rethinking Restrictive Housing

Lessons from Five U.S. Jail and Prison Systems

In recent years, the practice of restrictive housing (otherwise known as solitary confinement or segregation) in U.S. prisons and jails has been the subject of increased scrutiny from researchers, advocates, policymakers, media, and the government agencies responsible for people who are incarcerated. Originally intended to manage people who committ...

Publication
  • Sara Sullivan, Léon Digard, Elena Vanko
May 01, 2018
Publication

A Question of Compassion

Medical Parole in New York State

Compassionate release laws enable incarcerated people who are elderly, seriously ill, incapacitated—or some combination thereof—to obtain parole in order to receive treatment in a community setting and in the company of loved ones. In recent years, the number of older adults in U.S. prisons has soared, even as the overall prison population has decl...

Publication
  • Rebecca Silber, Léon Digard, Jessi LaChance
April 27, 2018
Publication

Corrections-Based Responses to the Opioid Epidemic

Lessons from New York State's Overdose Education and Naloxone Distribution Program

As the opioid crisis has swept the nation, more and more states are equipping their first responders and police officers with naloxone, an overdose antidote that reverses opioid overdoses and can be administered by bystanders with minimal training. This report details the efforts of New York State to implement an overdose education and naloxone dis...

Publication
  • Vedan Anthony-North, Leah Pope, Stephanie Pottinger, Izzy Sederbaum
March 22, 2018
Publication

Divided Justice

Trends in Black and White Jail Incarceration 1990-2013

Recent data analyses on jail incarceration—taken from Vera’s Incarceration Trends tool—reveal that although significant racial disparities still exist between black and white jail incarceration rates, incarceration rates for black people are declining, while rates for white people are rising. This report dives into the data on black and white incar...

Publication
  • Ram Subramanian, Kristi Riley, Chris Mai
February 25, 2018
Publication