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Crime and punishment issues continue to confound Vermont

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Posted: Aug 08, 2022| Categories: Uncategorized

Crime and punishment issues continue to confound Vermont

By Bill Schubart

Crime is nourished by untreated mental health, poverty, hunger, substance abuse, and a tidal wave of available guns and unwanted children. What if we addressed the elements that feed crime, instead of just locking up offenders?

Excerpts from article:

Vermont spends about $150 million each year on corrections — about 10 percent of the state’s general fund budget. It costs $50,000 a year on average to keep a Vermont inmate in jail. The U.S. spends, as a whole, $81 billion a year.

Given Gov. Scott’s “affordability agenda,” what if, as in other complex systems, we were to move that investment upstream to offer treatment for mental illness, substance abuse disorder and also amend our tax system and social safety net systems to reduce poverty and homelessness?


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