The Takeaway

Should We Give Prisoners a College Education?

Friday, April 11, 2014

Research suggests that inmates who participated in prison college programs  are 43 percent less likely to return to a life of crime. But the idea of giving prisoners a college education remains unpopular.

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The Takeaway

Should We Give Prisoners a College Education? | What Sebelius's Resignation Means for the ACA | Colin Firth on Torture, Redemption & 'The Railway Man'

Friday, April 11, 2014

Should We Give Prisoners a College Education? | How One Gang Took Control of a Baltimore Jail | What Sebelius's Resignation Means for the ACA & Midterm Elections | Movie Reviews of This Week's Big Releases | Colbert Sheds Character for 'Late Show' Chair | What 'Heartbleed' Says About What ...


See The Streets Through an Ex-Con's Eyes

Monday, April 07, 2014

Alvin Entzminger, an ex-con and a long-time Central Harlem resident, shows you what you're overloooking.


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The Leonard Lopate Show

The University of Sing Sing

Monday, March 31, 2014

In 1998, five former inmates founded the privately funded Hudson Link for Higher Education, which enables incarcerated men and women to earn a college diploma. Since partnering with Mercy College, Sing Sing prisoners are able to receive the same curriculum and diploma as on-campus students. Sean Pica, a former inmate who helped found and runs the Hudson Link for Higher Education, and Timothy Skousen, director of the film “The University of Sing Sing,” discusses the transformation that occurs when inmates receive not only a college diploma, but also a chance at redemption and a reason to hope. “The University of Sing Sing” debuts on HBO March 31.

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The Leonard Lopate Show

Human Rights in Iran; Prison; Poverty and Health

Monday, March 31, 2014

On today’s show: we’ll talk to the former head of Iran’s largest student organization, who fled the country after being held in solitary confinement for 100 days. Filmmaker Timothy Skousen on the program at Sing Sing prison that has allowed inmates to earn a college degree. He’s joined by one of the program’s founders. Our series Strapped: A Look at Poverty in America examines the effects poverty has on health and mental health. And food writer Michael Ruhlman tells us about his new cookbook devoted to eggs.

The Brian Lehrer Show

In Danger on Rikers Island

Thursday, March 27, 2014

New York Times reporter Michael Schwirtz sheds light on the problems at the City jail complex on Rikers Island, including prisoner abuse and the problems corrections officers face in dealing with a smaller population, but one with a higher component of the mentally ill.

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The Leonard Lopate Show

Helping the Exonerated Cope After Release

Monday, March 03, 2014

Unlike parolees, there’s no help available for people falsely convicted of crimes as they make the transition out of prison. As one former inmate says, "You’re released with nothing."

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NY Changes Could Be 'Tipping Point' for Prison Reform

Thursday, February 20, 2014

New York's unprecedented restrictions on the use of solitary confinement places the state at the forefront on one issue in an emerging national debate about the criminal justice system.


The Brian Lehrer Show

From NYPD to Prison to Prison Reform

Thursday, February 06, 2014

Bernard Kerik, recent federal prison inmate, former New York City Police Commissioner and author of The Lost Son: A Life in Pursuit of Justice (Regan Books, 2001) talks about his post-incarceration activism on behalf of sentencing reform.


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Life of the Law

Release Day

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

For eighteen years, California’s three strikes law leveled harsh penalties against repeat felons: anyone with two felony convictions received 25 years to life for committing a third felony. In 2012, Californians voted to change the three strikes law,


The Brian Lehrer Show

New Yorkers Behind Bars

Monday, January 06, 2014

Michael Jacobson, director of the CUNY Institute for State and Local Governance, professor of sociology at the CUNY Graduate Center, and former head of the Vera Institute and NYC correction commissioner from 1995 - 1998, looks at how incarceration rates have changed in NYC, both pre-trial and post-sentencing.


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The Takeaway

Family Fights for US Marine's Release in Iran

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Just before his visit to the U.S. back in September, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani made a bold statement to the West by freeing 11 political prisoners. But one American of Iranian descent — with no political ties — is still being held at Tehran’s notorious Evin prison, which has held political prisoners since the 1979 Iranian Revolution. Former US Marine Amir Hekmati has been detained at Evin for more than two years. His Congressman, along with the United Nations and his family, including his sister Sarah Hekmati, are desperately seeking his release.


The Takeaway

Suffering in Silence: College Kids & Suicide | Obama Commutes Sentences of Eight Federal Inmates | What to Get the Kids? High Tech Toys that Teach

Friday, December 20, 2013

Suffering in Silence: College Kids & Suicide | What to Get the Kids? High Tech Toys that Teach | Surprise Pardon: Putin Frees His Rival Khodorkovsky | Obama Commutes Sentences of Eight Federal Inmates | Movie Date: 'American Hustle,' 'Anchorman 2,' 'Her' | Actor Ralph Fiennes Explores the Hidden Life ...

Life of the Law

On Prison and Pregnancy

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

United States incarcerates six times as many women as it did thirty years ago. Many of these women are already mothers, and four percent of incarcerated women enter prison pregnant. What happens to the babies born in the correctional system?



Anniversary Episode: Strangers Revisited

Friday, December 13, 2013

An online dater finds love after 16 years, and an exonerated prisoner goes to see the former District Attorney. - Get the full story here.


Life of the Law

A Criminal Debt

Tuesday, December 03, 2013

It’s not unusual at all to leave prison anywhere across the country owing fees, fines, or other costs to the local court. The city of Philadelphia alone is trying to collect some $1.5 billion in judicial debt owed back to days of the Nixon Administrati...



Head of Corrections Worker Union to Discuss Bus Delays on Rikers Island

Friday, November 22, 2013

Mayor Michael Bloomberg is accusing the president of the Corrections Officers Union, Norman Seabrook, of deliberately ordering a slowdown in the delivering of inmates from Rikers Island to courtrooms across the city, Seabrook hasn't commented, but on his weekly radio show he said he would address the issue on Monday.


The Brian Lehrer Show

Punishment that Fits

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Robert Blecker, New York Law School professor, death penalty advocate and author of The Death of Punishment: Searching for Justice among the Worst of the Worst (Palgrave Macmillan, 2013), says his research in prisons shows that punishment is perversely practiced today where the worst criminals often live under better circumstances than those with more hope for rehabilitation. While he supports the death penalty, he argues that harsher treatment for those convicted of the worst crimes could make it less likely to be imposed.

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Prison Guards Forced To Work Without Pay During Government Shutdown

Thursday, October 10, 2013

More than 800 correctional officers at two federal prisons in New York City have been working without pay since the partial government shutdown went into effect Oct. 1.

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The Takeaway

Two Prisoners to Leave Guantanamo Bay

Thursday, August 29, 2013

In the first transfer of prisoners in nearly a year, the Pentagon has announced that two Algerians being held at the Guantanamo Bay prison camp will be transferred out. According to their files, were recommended to be sent home in 2007. Joining The Takeaway is Carol Rosenberg, reporter for the Miami Herald. She explains why the Pentagon has decided to move the two men.