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Catholic World News

Christian leaders condemn ‘mass incarceration’ in the US

February 27, 2014

Citing a report that states that the United States has “25% of the world’s imprisoned people,” an ecumenical organization whose members include Protestant, Catholic, and Orthodox church leaders decried “mass incarceration” in the nation, especially for drug and immigration-related offenses.

“Mass incarceration is a destructive system of human control where certain ethnic minorities experience inequitable interaction with the nation’s penal system,” Christian Churches Together said in a recent statement. “African Americans make up 13% of the US population and use drugs at the same rates as people of other races, but represent 45% of those imprisoned for drug violations.”

“Mass incarceration must stop,” the Christian leaders added. “We are challenging ourselves together with government and the nation to seize this moment when multiple forces are aligning toward positive action to correct the injustices within our ‘justice’ system.”

Auxiliary Bishop Denis Madden of Baltimore, who serves as chairman of the bishops’ Committee on Ecumenical and Interreligious Affairs, represented the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops at the meeting.


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  • Posted by: james-w-anderson8230 - Feb. 27, 2014 5:59 PM ET USA

    Regarding: “African Americans ... use drugs at the same rates as people of other races, ..." I wonder if there is any documentation to back up this statement?