Philadelphia’s jail population declined 11 percent from 2009 to 2010, according to a new study released this morning from The Pew Charitable Trusts’ Philadelphia Research Initiative.
The report reveals that the average daily population in 2010 was 8,273 – down from 9,321 in 2009. The number dipped as low as 7,700 earlier this year, but rose to 8,048 in June. Experts attribute the reduction to fewer people being held pretrial and those held for parole and probation violations.
“The joint reform efforts of Philadelphia’s criminal justice leaders are behind much of the decline in the city’s jail population,” said Claire Shubik-Richards, senior associate at the Philadelphia Research Initiative and author of the report. “These officials recognize that, through efficiencies, they can do a lot to manage the size of the inmate population without risking safety. And they think there is more to be done.”
The city’s jail population still remains high compared to other cities with the fifth-highest rate of incarceration among the 50 jurisdictions with the highest jail populations. The full report can be accessed here.