By Nick Roll, Photo: Sue Ogrocki/AP/File, Christian Science Monitor, October 24, 2022
1. United States
Oklahoma has reduced its prison population by 21% over the last five years. Through a series of legislative reforms and voter initiatives, Oklahoma eliminated prison time for some low-level drug and property offenses, and reduced the length of sentences for other crimes.
A community-led campaign called Project Commutation has helped people with long sentences have them commuted. And a significant number of incarcerated people were released during the pandemic.
In 2016, Oklahoma had the highest incarceration rate in the country. Crime had been falling in the state, but the prison population exploded in large part because of the number of crimes classified as felonies. Republican-led reforms have helped the prison population drop from 28,342 in January 2017 to 22,441 in May 2022.