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The US has More Jails than Colleges. Here’s a Map of Where Those Prisoners Live

In many parts of America, there are more people living in prisons than on college campuses

The U.S. has more jails than colleges. Here’s a map of where those prisoners live

There were 2.3 million prisoners in the U.S. as of the 2010 Census. It’s often been remarked that our national incarceration rate of 707 adults per every 100,000 residents is the highest in the world, by a huge margin. 

 
by Christopher Ingraham | Washington Post

We tend to focus less on where we’re putting all those people. But the 2010 Census tallied the location of every adult and juvenile prisoner in the United States. If we were to put them all on a map, this is what they would look like:

incarcerated1

The map shows the raw number of prisoners in each U.S. county as of the 2010 Census. Much of the discussion of regional prison population only centers around inmates in our 1,800 state and federal correctional facilities. But at any given time, hundreds of thousands more individuals are locked up in the nation’s 3,200 local and county jails. This map includes these individuals as well.

To put these figures in context, we have slightly more jails and prisons in the U.S. — 5,000 plus — than we do degree-granting colleges and universities. In many parts of America, particularly the South, there are more people living in prisons than on college campuses.

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