Incarceration_Policy_Memo - MEMORANDUM TO: URBAN HEALTH...

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MEMORANDUM TO: URBAN HEALTH POLICY STUDENTS FROM: INSTRUCTOR SUBJECT: POLICY MEMORANDUM #1 DATE: FALL 2009 Overcrowded prisons have become an increasingly important issue in public policy. Although many people agree that our prisons are too crowded and our incarceration rates are too high, it is still a contentious issue that affects people and communities in different ways. Senator Jim Webb (D., Va.) is working on “legislation that will create a national commission to look at every aspect of our criminal justice system with an eye toward reshaping the process from top to bottom” (Webb, 2009, pg. 5). In this exercise, you will gather data from Senator Webb’s article, “What’s Wrong With Our Prisons” and/or the prison statistics section on the Department of Justice website. You will then briefly assess how a specific community health issue is related to drug and incarceration policies in the United States (You may choose the health issue. Some examples include: how our system handles people with mental health issues, drug addiction, or how racially disproportionate incarceration rates affects communities, etc.). Your memorandum should be 1-2 pages, single spaced, and include one chart, graph, or table to visually represent the data you use (the table is not part of the 1-2 pages). STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM This section gives a concise overview of the problem. Don’t get caught up in describing the problem in a lot of detail. This section should be short, to the point and set the tone for the remainder of the memo. BACKGROUND This is the data you need to give the decision-maker a clear picture of the issue. This section synthesizes knowledge for the policy-maker in an impartial fashion and provides critical, relevant information. You will also include a visual representation of your data in the form of a graph or chart or table. Your data may come from the article, “What’s Wrong With Our Prisons?” by Senator Jim Webb, or from prison
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Incarceration_Policy_Memo - MEMORANDUM TO: URBAN HEALTH...

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