Justice and Domestic Affairs

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    Americans’ support for college financial aid for prisoners depends on how the benefits are described.

Americans’ support for college financial aid for prisoners depends on how the benefits are described.

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Allowing prisoners to access college-level education reduces the risk of reoffending and can save state governments money because of the reduction in future crime. But Americans, by contrast, often oppose providing prisoners such benefits. With the recent overturning of the ban on prisoners’ receiving Pell Grants, Travis M. Johnston and Kevin H. Wozniak look at how the public reacts […]

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    In Minnesota, reforms to post-release supervision for those leaving prison have been a cost-effective solution.

In Minnesota, reforms to post-release supervision for those leaving prison have been a cost-effective solution.

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In Minnesota, corrections authorities have used a program known as intensive supervised release (ISR) to monitor some of those who leave prison in the state. In new research Grant Duwe and Susan McNeeley examine the effects of recent reforms to the program which take into account the risk of reoffending by those released. They find that, compared to standard […]

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    Book Review: The Death of Asylum: Hidden Geographies of the Enforcement Archipelago by Alison Mountz

Book Review: The Death of Asylum: Hidden Geographies of the Enforcement Archipelago by Alison Mountz

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In The Death of Asylum: Hidden Geographies of the Enforcement Archipelago, Alison Mountz explores how the proliferation and normalisation of the island as a site of enforcement and detention is threatening the right to asylum. Drawing on field trips to Italy’s Lampedusa Island, Australia’s Christmas Island and the US territories of Guam and Saipan to show how the enforcement archipelago is […]

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    Homelessness is North America’s pandemic within a pandemic

Homelessness is North America’s pandemic within a pandemic

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COVID-19 has exacerbated social inequalities in North America with unemployment rising to record levels. Housing security has also been severely impacted by the crisis. Cynthia Puddu discusses the links between housing affordability and potential solutions to this social crisis, such as a Universal Basic Income and the need to treat housing as a human right. 

The economic ramifications of […]

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    Why legal cannabis may be more widespread in the US after the election.

Why legal cannabis may be more widespread in the US after the election.

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The process of implementing comprehensive cannabis legislation varies between states and is often met with bureaucratic challenges. With many states putting medical and recreational cannabis on the ballot this election, Lee Hannah, Gideon Cunningham and Daniel Mallinson look at the key differences in these states’ approaches to legalisation. The increasing momentum on legal cannabis, they write, is likely to […]

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    No matter the election result, the US will continue to wrestle with gun violence.

No matter the election result, the US will continue to wrestle with gun violence.

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Tens of thousands of Americans are killed by firearms every year, and yet the issue of gun related violence has been little mentioned in the 2020 presidential election campaign. Elizabeth Charash and Julie Norman write that the ubiquity of guns in America is linked to a greater likelihood of police shootings of civilians, and higher homicide rates for law […]

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    This year has seen a massive surge in gun purchases in both Republican and Democratic states

This year has seen a massive surge in gun purchases in both Republican and Democratic states

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Past research has shown that when Republicans are afraid for their safety, or when they are concerned about gun laws being tightened, they buy more guns. In new research which uses background checks as a stand-in for gun sales, Matthew Lang determines that there have been eight million ‘extra’ gun sales in both Republican and Democratic states in 2020 […]

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    What the reaction to Jacob Blake’s shooting tells us about political polarization in America

What the reaction to Jacob Blake’s shooting tells us about political polarization in America

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Jacob Blake’s shooting by police in August in Kenosha, Wisconsin, and the subsequent local and national protests in response have generally been covered by the national media along partisan lines, especially in light of the 2020 presidential election. Aubri McDonald writes that by examining how events such as these are understood, or framed, we can start to better understand […]

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    How Amy Coney Barrett’s Supreme Court nomination could dominate the presidential election.

How Amy Coney Barrett’s Supreme Court nomination could dominate the presidential election.

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This past weekend, President Trump announced that US circuit court judge, Amy Coney Barrett, would be his nominee to replace Ruth Bader Ginsburg on the US Supreme Court. In this Q&A Julie Norman writes that Coney Barrett’s stances on most issues would shift the Court into a solid conservative majority, which would likely have serious implications for the Affordable […]

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    Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s death casts a shadow on the 2020 election—but nowhere more than on the Supreme Court itself

Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s death casts a shadow on the 2020 election—but nowhere more than on the Supreme Court itself

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Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg passed away last week, with the public narrative quickly shifting away from a remembrance of her legacy to how the political battle over her replacement would affect the presidential election. Lauren C. Bell reflects on the important legacy of an ‘unlikely icon’, and how Ginsburg’s death has placed the US Supreme Court at […]

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