The Pew Charitable Trusts today released an exhaustive study that puts a different type of price tag on incarceration.
With an estimated 2.3 million Americans behind bars, the folks at Pew tried to determine how serving time impacts the ability of future ex-cons to earn a living. The numbers are sobering, but not entirely surprising: Pew says men whose resumes list jail or prison under "Recent work experience" can expect to earn 40 percent less anually than those who haven't been locked up. By age 48, the average male ex-con will earn $179,000 less than his law-abiding counterparts, the study claims.
The study is packed with other interesting income-related figures, but it also includes a stat that is utterly jaw-dropping: 2.7 million children in this country have parents behind bars. Break that figure down, Pew says, and you find that 1 in every 28 children have a mom or dad who is doing time. Twenty-five years ago, 1 in every 125 children had a parent that was incarcerated. What the hell happened?
Click here to read more of Pew's study.