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Prison Population Growth 5%

The release today from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (www.abs.gov.au) states there were 23,555 prisoners in Australia on 30 June 2003, an increase of 5% on the 22,492 prisoners at 30 June 2002. The imprisonment rate of 153 prisoners per 100,000 adult population represents a 3% increase on the rate of 148 prisoners per 100,000 adult population in 2002. Only 6.8% of prisioners are female.

Over the past 10 years, the prisoner population has increased by nearly 50%. This increase has exceeded the 15% growth in the Australian adult population, resulting in the adult imprisonment rate increasing from 119 to 153 prisoners per 100,000 adult population between 1993 and 2003. Highest state rate is Northern Territory at 514 per 100,000 due to high indigenous population and imprisionment rate. Both the Nperthern Territory and national average pale compared to the USA where the imprisionment rate is 700 per 100,000, the highest rate in the world.

Posted Thursday, 22 January 2004

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