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Social Injustice and Public Health$
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Barry S. Levy and Victor W. Sidel

Print publication date: 2005

Print ISBN-13: 9780195171853

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2009

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195171853.001.0001

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Incarcerated People

Incarcerated People

Social Injustice and Public Health

Ernest M. Drucker

Oxford University Press

This chapter deals with social injustice as it affects incarcerated people. It covers mass incarceration and race, collateral damages of incarceration, health of prisoners, the effects on prisoners' families and communities, economic disenfranchisement, and civic death (felony disenfranchisement). It also discusses the roots and underlying causes of this social injustice, and what needs to be done, including improving community services, providing better health services for those who are incarcerated, reforming drug law, repealing mandatory sentencing laws, assisting family members, and addressing voting disenfranchisement. The chapter asserts that reforms are needed to change drug policies to reduce criminalization of drug use, and to apply a public health model to address drug problems worldwide, replacing prosecution with effective treatment, education, and prevention.

Keywords:   incarceration, prisoners, mental health, disenfranchisement, community services, health services, drug laws, mandatory sentencing laws, voting disenfranchisement

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