Criminal Justice Reform & Racial Equality

The U.S. has the highest incarceration rate in the world. Currently, more young black men are behind bars than in college. Our punitive criminal justice system is ineffective and destroys countless lives and communities without making society safer. It wastes taxpayer dollars and is severely straining federal, state, and local budgets.

The Open Society Policy Center seeks to end our nation’s over-reliance on punishment through mass incarceration. Reforming stringent sentencing laws and policies and placing greater emphasis on rehabilitation will promote fairness while also saving scarce public funds. Lifting barriers to former prisoners reentering society will strengthen families and communities, and reduce recidivism. Sensible reforms to harsh school discipline policies can improve the education and life opportunities of our youth.

OSPC also coordinates the work of the Justice Roundtable, a coalition of national organizations working to reform U.S. sentencing and prison policies, and to address the persistent racial equalities in the judicial system, among other issues.