Half of adults have had family members thrown in jail

By Brian Williams
January 21, 2019

Another one of the reflections of the capitalist rulers’ crisis today and how it weighs on working people is the significant increase in the number of workers ground up in the U.S. criminal “justice” system. A recent study by Cornell University documents that nearly 50 percent of individuals over 18 years old in the U.S. have seen an immediate family member thrown into jail or prison for at least one night.

For Blacks and Native Americans the numbers are higher — 63 percent have had a family member behind bars. Overwhelmingly, those targeted by the U.S. rulers’ cops, prosecutors and prison officials are working people. 

One in seven adults has had an immediate family member behind bars for a year or more; for one in 34 that relative has been imprisoned a decade or longer. Nearly one-third of Blacks have seen a close relative imprisoned for a year or more. Over 50 percent of workers who make $25,000 a year or less have had a family member thrown behind bars. 

The rulers show their disdain for workers behind bars in many ways. Many find themselves stuck in prisons far from family and friends. Less than half of those who have had a family member locked up for more than a year say they’ve never been able to visit them.