As the population of humans increase, the issue of overcrowding is bound to occur. For example, across the United States you hear of most schools being overcrowded because there are too many children in each classroom. This puts a strain on both teachers and students, for the education environment is disrupted by behavior problems and various learning capacities.
Now imagine this same scenario, except it’s adult inmates incarcerated at federal prisons. Can you depict in your mind the stress and tension officers and security guards experience when there’s an overcrowding of inmates? Also this prison overcrowding increases the risk of more violent acts towards authority and more inmates finding ways to escape prison.
So far, the solution to this overpopulation issue is realigning state prison to local jails to prevent prison overcrowding. This progression was signed into California law called Assembly Bill (AB) 109, or otherwise known as California AB 109. Governor Edmund G. Brown, Jr. signed this historic legislation in 2011 in hopes of reducing the number of California inmates in the state’s prisons by sentencing new, non-serious or non-sex offenders to county jail (also known as the Realignment Act). But there’s more… these offenders can also receive drug and mental health screenings; health assessments, and short-term transitional housing to help them successfully re-enter the community.
The following year in November 2012, California voters approved Governor Brown’s Proposition 30, which protected the ongoing funding to the counties for Realignment. The amendment forbid the legislature from removing funding to the counties.
Since the onset of AB 109, has it been successful? Well so far most law enforcement officers are seeing positive changes since California began reducing prison overcrowding, and there’s high hopes that this trend will continue. Yet they err on the side of caution because statistics of the effectiveness of the Realignment Act is still preliminary.
California AB 109 News