In an article titled Tough on poverty, tough on crime, the Conservative senator for Kingston-Frontenac-Leeds, Hugh Segal, provided the following statistics in Toronto's Sunday Star yesterday:
• More than 70 per cent of those who enter prisons have not completed high school.
• Seventy per cent of offenders entering prisons have unstable job histories.
• Four of every five arrive with serious substance-abuse problems.
• A Toronto study of 300 homeless adults found 73 per cent of men had been arrested and 49 per cent of them incarcerated at least once. Twelve per cent of women had served time.
Hmmm. It is clearly obvious to our leaders in government that, to address these root causes, we need to build more and bigger prisons and lengthen prison terms so that these people can finish high school, learn job skills and get help with their substance abuse problems. This should have the added benefit of reducing the homeless population.