In The Know is your daily briefing on Oklahoma policy-related news. Inclusion of a story does not necessarily mean endorsement by the Oklahoma Policy Institute. Click here to subscribe to In The Know and see past editions.
Today In The News
More Women Head to State Prisons: Despite years of concern over Oklahoma’s high rate of female incarceration, the number of women sent to prison jumped again in the latest fiscal year. In fiscal 2016, which ended June 30, the number of women sent to Oklahoma prisons rose by 9.5 percent, from 1,593 to 1,744, data from the Oklahoma Department of Corrections shows. The total men imprisoned that year fell by about 1 percent, to 8,282. Statewide, the number of new prisoners increased by less than 1 percent [Oklahoma Watch].
Robert Henry: Vote to reform Oklahoma’s criminal justice system: The overarching goal of public policy should be to protect citizens, strengthen communities and yield a wise return on investment. To this end, one of the most important issues facing Oklahoma is the need to reform our criminal justice system. Politically motivated policies and ineffective sentencing guidelines cause a great deal of harm to the safety and health of communities across our state. Yet families, communities and future generations can benefit greatly from policies based on sound logic, evidence and research [Robert Henry / NewsOK].
In reducing staff to cut budget, DHS paid millions to departing employees: The Department of Human Services spent $14 million on employees who resigned or accepted voluntary buyouts from the state agency in fiscal 2016, a 70 percent increase over the prior year. The increase in so-called “terminal leave” payments comes as the agency continues to deal with decreasing staff in some areas while simultaneously increasing staff in another department. A spokeswoman said the increase in terminal pay was to be expected. DHS has reduced staff by more than 1,200 employees over the past two years, agency spokeswoman Sheree Powell said in an email [Tulsa World].
Continue Reading »
Continue Reading »