BJS: Bureau of Justice Statistics

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Home | Corrections
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Corrections refers to the supervision of persons arrested for, convicted of, or sentenced for criminal offenses. Correctional populations fall into two general categories: institutional corrections and community corrections. Corrections data, with a few exceptions, covers adult agencies or facilities and adult offenders.

The Bureau of Justice Statistics Corrections Unit maintains over 30 data collections. Most are annual collections of administrative data from correctional administrators, ranging from basic population counts and offender demographic characteristics to facility capacity, programs, staff, and resources. These data collections include—

The NPS also collects counts on specific inmate populations from the Department of Defense (DoD) and the U.S. territories. Some limited information on the number of juveniles held in adult facilities is also collected in the NPS and the ASJ. Jails in Indian Country is a separate collection for data on counts and characteristics of persons held in tribal jails. BJS also tracks administrative data on other topics, such as HIV in correctional facilities; deaths in custody; sexual assault in correctional facilities; and capital punishment statutes, populations, and executions.

In addition to collecting administrative data, BJS maintains a number of recurring national surveys of prison and jail inmates. These surveys are conducted periodically and use a nationally representative sample of inmates. The surveys, Survey of Prison Inmates (formerly known as the Survey of Inmates in State and Federal Correctional Facilities) and the Survey of Inmates in Local Jails, are broad in scope and collect a wide range of data on the personal and criminal histories of criminal offenders. Topics cover childhood experiences, family structure, educational background, prior criminal activity, substance abuse experiences, mental and physical health problems, and conditions of current confinement. Estimates derived from these surveys are national and, with rare exceptions, are not available at the state or facility level.

Data Collections & Surveys

Publications & Products

Source and Use of Firearms Involved in Crimes: Survey of Prison Inmates, 2016 Presents statistics that describe firearm possession of state and federal prisoners who were serving a sentence in 2016.
  Summary (PDF 222K) | Full report (PDF 431K) | Data tables (Zip format 7K)

Prisoners Executed Prisoners executed under civil authority in the United States, by year, region, and jurisdiction, 1977-2016.
  Data tables (Spreadsheet 7K)
Part of the Capital Punishment Series

Probation and Parole in the United States, 2016 Presents national data on adult offenders under community supervision on probation or parole in 2016, including trends in the overall community supervision population and annual changes in probation and parole populations.
  Press Release | Summary (PDF 209K) | Full report (PDF 584K) | Data tables (Zip format)
Part of the Probation and Parole Populations Series

Correctional Populations in the United States, 2016 Presents statistics on persons supervised by U.S. adult correctional systems at year-end 2016, including persons supervised in the community on probation or parole and those incarcerated in state or federal prison or local jail.
  Press Release | PDF (635K) | Data tables (Spreadsheet 14K)
Part of the Correctional Populations in the United States Series

Jail Inmates in 2016 Presents data on inmates confined in local jails between 2000 and 2016, including population counts and incarceration rates, inmate demographic characteristics and conviction status, average daily population, rated capacity of local jails and percent of capacity occupied, and turnover rates by jurisdiction size.
  Press Release | Summary (PDF 198K) | Full report (PDF 662K) | Comma-delimited format (CSV) (Zip format 21K)
Part of the Prison and Jail Inmates at Midyear Series

Prisoners in 2016 Presents final counts of prisoners under the jurisdiction of state and federal correctional authorities at yearend 2016, including admissions, releases, noncitizen inmates, and inmates age 17 or younger.
  Press Release | Summary (PDF 205K) | Full report (PDF 1M) | Comma-delimited format (CSV) (Zip format 40K)
Part of the Prisoners Series

Jails in Indian Country, 2016 Describes jails, confinement facilities, detention centers, and other correctional facilities operated by tribal authorities or the Bureau of Indian Affairs.
  Summary (PDF 174K) | Full Report (PDF 467K) | Comma-delimited format (CSV) (Zip format 30K)
Part of the Jails in Indian Country Series

HIV in Prisons, 2015 - Statistical Tables Presents data on state and federal prisoners who were HIV-positive or had confirmed AIDS and prisoners who died from AIDS-related causes.
  Press Release | Summary (PDF 184K) | PDF (980K) | ASCII file (26K) | Comma-delimited format (CSV) (Zip format 25K)
Part of the HIV in Prisons and Jails Series

PREA Data Collection Activities, 2017 Describes the Bureau of Justice Statistics' (BJS) activities to collect data and report on the incidence and effects of sexual victimization in correctional facilities, as required by the Prison Rape Elimination Act of 2003 (PREA) (P.L. 108-79).
  PDF (316K) | ASCII file (20K)
Part of the PREA Data Collection Activities Series

Indicators of Mental Health Problems Reported by Prisoners and Jail Inmates, 2011-2012 Presents prevalence estimates of mental health indicators among state and federal prisoners and jail inmates by different time periods, demographics, criminal justice history, most serious offense, mental health treatment received while incarcerated, and rule violations.
  Press Release (Press Release) | Summary (PDF 190K) | PDF (626K) | ASCII file (46K) | Comma-delimited format (CSV) (Zip format 22K)

Terms & Definitions

Community corrections The supervision of criminal offenders in the resident population, as opposed to confining offenders in secure correctional facilities. The two main types of community corrections supervision are probation and parole. Community corrections is also referred to as community supervision.
Custody To have custody of a prisoner, a state or the Federal Bureau of Prisons (BOP) must physically hold that person in one of its facilities. A locality, state, or the BOP may hold inmates over whom a different government maintains jurisdiction.
Custody count The number of offenders in custody. To have custody of a prisoner, a state or the Federal Bureau of Prisons (BOP) must physically hold that person in one of its facilities. A locality, state, or the BOP may have custody of a prisoner over whom a different government maintains jurisdiction.
Design capacity The number of inmates that planners or architects intended for the facility.
Federal prisons Prison facilities run by the Federal Bureau of Prisons (BOP). Prisoners housed in these facilities are under the legal authority of the federal government. This excludes private facilities under exclusive contract with BOP.
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