A portrait of Peter Wagner.
Peter Wagner
Executive Director
I need your help. For 14 years, the Prison Policy Initiative has been at the forefront of the movement to keep the prison system from exerting undue influence on our electoral process. Our work has changed how our democracy works in 4 states and hundreds of local governments. We’ve even won at the Supreme Court, but our long-term viability depends on people like you investing in our work.

Can you stand up for democracy by joining our small network of donors today? You can make a one-time gift, or become a monthly donor.

I thank you for investing in our work for a more just tomorrow.
—Peter Wagner
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The Prison Policy Initiative organized this website to be the starting point for anyone interested in learning more about the problem of prison gerrymandering.

The website's navigation menu is designed to give you an overview of prison gerrymandering: the problem and the solutions. Separately, the menu provides some starting places to take action in your community or at the national level.

The downside to producing so much information is that it can be difficult to find a particular piece of information that speaks to your specific need. This page provides an alternative introduction to the dozens of state-by-state and district-by-district reports, hundreds of articles and fact sheets, and thousands of communications with elected officials spread across both this topical website and our main organizational website.

What's your goal?

Learn the basics:

Get involved:

  • States with active campaigns against prison gerrymandering are listed on our take action page. Each state has a frequently-updated list of resources about the problem and organizing in that state.
  • Legislation page with active legislation, and past legislative efforts.
  • Model legislation for states and counties.
  • Resolutions page for non-binding organizational and legislative statements.

Use data and tools for demographers, redistricting professionals & advocates:

  • Locator (2010) (annotations and correctional facility counts by Census block, searchable by county)
  • Map files (shapefiles and kml) (a national point shapefile with the group quarters – including correctional facilities – populations, and Google Earth files that allow you to view the information available in our Correctional Facility Locator through Google Earth)
  • Too Big to Ignore (report analyzing how the U.S. Census practice of tabulating incarcerated people as residents of the prison county distorts statistics for county populations)
  • Democracy Toolkit (training on using our research tools and how to analyze the impact of prison gerrymandering on local governments)

Find data on your state, county or municipality

  • Check out our 50 state report (a state-by-state compilation of local and state prison gerrymandering issues)
  • Find mentions of your state, county or municipality in our blog, in a fact sheet, or elsewhere on our sites:

Find detailed information on a specific issue:

Learn more about the strategy:

  • General
    • Podcasts with interviews with leaders of the fight to end prison gerrymandering
  • Talking about funding
    • Background explanation of how funding formulas are unaffected by redistricting data

Find material (by type) to help you get informed

Find material for redistribution as an introduction to the issue

Litigation materials:

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  • September 21, 2016:
    Executive Director Peter Wagner will be speaking at Claremont McKenna College in California. Details TBA.

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