UCLA RESEARCHERS CREATE INCARCERATION SPENDING MAP OF LA COUNTY
A new project from UCLA researchers, Million Dollar Hoods, is a website and mapping system that shows how much the LA County Sheriff’s Department spends to incarcerate residents in each neighborhood across the county.
“We made this choice because Los Angeles operates the largest jail system in the United States and we wanted to better understand the impact of L.A.’s jails and lockups,” said Kelly Lytle-Hernandez, UCLA professor of history and African-American Studies.
Users can sort map data on the site by race, gender, specific crime, and top cause for arrest.
Bright red hot-spots—South LA, Lancaster, Palmdale and others—reveal that LA County is spending the majority of its jail budget incarcerating people from a handful of concentrated areas.
Lancaster alone accounted for approximately $82,240,000 of the county’s jail budget between 2010-2015 (a total of close to $6 billion). The map also paints quite a racially disparate picture. Of those jailed Lancaster residents, 43% were black, 27% were Latino, and 30% were white. In 2010, the city’s population was 20.5% black, 38% Latino, and 49.6% white.
The Million Dollar Hoods researchers have also partnered with the LA County Commission on Human Relations to hold community meetings for people impacted by policing and incarceration to give personal testimony. The first public hearing was held on September 10, in the 5th Supervisorial District, which includes Lancaster and Palmdale. (You can watch videos from that meeting here.) There will be five more meetings—one in each of the other four districts, as well as a final meeting to allow law enforcement officials to respond to the messages and testimony given by members of the public.
MORE ON INCARCERATION IN LA: JAILS SYSTEM PUT UNDER SPOTLIGHT ON “THIS IS LIFE WITH LISA LING”
This Sunday, at 10:00p.m., CNN will air an episode of “This Is Life with Lisa Ling” exploring the Los Angeles County jail system, which holds America’s largest jail population and even acts as the country’s largest mental health care provider.
The jail system is over capacity by nearly 2,700 inmates. At any time, there are between 17,000 and 20,000 inmates spread between seven jail facilities across the county. The daily population is nearly double that of the next largest jail system—New York City. And more than half of LA County’s inmates have not been convicted—they are sitting in jail awaiting trial.
Watch reporter Lisa Ling’s not-to-be-missed “This is Life” episode Sunday night on CNN to learn more about the complex and sprawling jail system.