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Trebling prisoner numbers : lessons for the future

Australian Institute of Criminology, Mark Lynch
25 February 2000 -

Mark Lynch
Principal Research Officer, Criminal Justice Commission, Queensland

Introduction

Over the period 1992-93 to 1997-98, prisoner numbers in Queensland increased by 116 per cent. If this trend were to continue for the next two years, prisoner numbers in Queensland will have trebled over a decade. This sudden and dramatic growth in prisoner numbers was neither anticipated nor (initially) explicable. Managing growth of this magnitude has placed the correctional system under considerable strain and required a very substantial investment in new prison infrastructure.

At this presentation, Mark Lynch discussed the CJC work into the growth in prisoner numbers and identified a wide range of factors which have made a significant contribution to the increasing prisoner numbers.

For the past year Mark Lynch has had carriage of the Prisoner Numbers Research Project, a major CJC research exercise aimed at identifying the reasons why Queensland prisoner numbers doubled over a five year period.

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