Article Title

Making Prisons Safe: Strategies for Reducing Violence

Publication Title

Washington University Journal of Law & Policy


If prison administrators provide humane conditions and require strict adherence to commonly accepted and nationally recognized techniques for regulating the unnecessary use of force, prisons can be reasonably safe for both prisoners and staff. Although the threat posed by gangs presents special problems, the traditional approach to correctional safety—suppression and isolation—has not been successful. The experiences of some innovative programs around the country, as discussed below, suggests the success of a radically different approach: closely monitored integration coupled with incentives and tools to help prisoners leave the gangs.