Help End Prison Gerrymandering Prison gerrymandering funnels political power away from urban communities to legislators who have prisons in their (often white, rural) districts. More than a decade ago, the Prison Policy Initiative put numbers on the problem and sparked the movement to end prison gerrymandering.

Can you help us continue the fight? Thank you.

—Peter Wagner, Executive Director

Lauderdale County, Mississippi

According to the 2000 Census, Lauderdale County, Mississippi has a population of 78,161 people. Of those, 47,013 (60%) are White, 29,838 (38%) are Black, and 888 (1%) are Latino[1]. However, 679 (or 1% of the 78,161 people) are not residents by choice but are people in prison.

Even though prisoners cannot participate in the local community, the Census Bureau nevertheless counts them as residents of the county where they are incarcerated.

A more accurate description would not include the prisoners. This would give Lauderdale County a population of 77,482 with a demographic that is 60% White, 38% Black, and 1% Latino.

Reported in
Census 2000
Total 78,161 679 77,482
White 47,013 166 46,847
Black 29,838 498 29,340
Latino 888 8 880


[1]The numbers for Whites, Blacks and Latinos may not add up to the total number because we have not included racial groups other than Whites and Blacks and because the Census Bureau considers "Latino" to be an ethnicity, not a race. Most of the people reported as being Latino are also counted as being White or Black.

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