The U.S. has the highest incarceration rate of any country in the world, with over 2.3 million people currently behind bars. Poor people and people of color are incarcerated at vastly disproportionate rates. Many prisoners are held in solitary confinement or denied adequate medical care and educational opportunities, and few resources are invested in reentry or community programs.
AFSC works to end mass incarceration, improve conditions for people who are in prison, stop prison privatization, and promote a reconciliation and healing approach to criminal justice issues.
No matter how private companies profit from prisons—detaining immigrants, needlessly expanding capacity, cutting quality—privatizing incarceration puts the pursuit of profits ahead of the needs of taxpayers, prisoners, and prison employees.
As the U.S. continues to imprison more people than any country in the world, momentum is growing for change in the criminal justice system. Learn more about the problem of mass incarceration and join our work to end it.
Over 80,000 people are being held in long-term solitary confinement in U.S. prisons, and even more are held in isolation in immigrant detention centers and juvenile facilities. Long-term isolation has no rehabilitative benefit and is considered a form of torture under international law.
Incarceration negatively impacts people on both sides of prison, jail, and detention center walls. AFSC works to ameliorate these conditions and to lift up the stories of resilience, perseverance, and resistance from people living behind bars.