NOW | Can an Innovative Program Make Big Cuts in America’s Prison Population?

Saving tax dollars – can an innovative program make big cuts in America’s prison population? Next on “NOW.”

The number of inmates in American prisons is outpacing the system’s ability to hold them all. In one startling example, California prisons hold well over 50,000 more inmates than they’re designed for, even though the state has built a dozen new prisons in the last 15 years. One of the biggest reasons is rampant recidivism.

On Friday, April 2, at 8:30 PM (check local listings), “NOW” goes inside an Illinois prison that may have the answer to California’s problems. With its innovative plan to keep released inmates from coming back, the Sheridan Correctional Center is trying to redefine “tough on crime” by being the largest fully dedicated drug prison in the country. The approach involves aggressive counseling, job training and following the convicts after they get out. Can their novel approach keep convicts out of jail for good?