Missouri Coalition Tackles State’s Rising Prison Population

COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) — A multidisciplinary team of Missouri professionals are rolling out a comprehensive prison reform initiative to tackle the state’s rising incarceration rates.

The coalition plans to implement parts of the Justice Reinvestment Initiative across three Missouri counties to prioritize an investment in mental health treatment and other social services.

Missouri possesses one of the nation’s highest incarceration rates. Women are being put in prison faster than in any other state.

The Council of State Governments is forecasting that Missouri would need to invest about $485 million in new prison infrastructure if its rate of incarceration continues.

Missouri Gov. Mike Parson is scheduled to address the key leaders and staff in the program at a public safety forum on Dec. 7 in Linn.