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Prison Policy Initiative on 4/3/2023 by Emily Widra and Alexi Jones
Research shows that people on probation and parole have high mortality rates: two and three times higher than the public at large.
That certainly suggests that our community supervision systems are failing at their most important — and basic — function: ensuring people on probation and parole succeed in the community.
With a similar approach to our recent series regarding the needs of people incarcerated in state prisons, we did a deep dive into the extensive National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH). The results of this survey, administered by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), provide key insights into these specific — and often unmet — needs faced by people under community supervision. Because this survey asks respondents if they were on probation or parole in the past 12 months, this dataset comes closer than any other source to offering a recent, descriptive, nationally representative picture of the population on probation and parole.