You Won’t Believe the Truth From Behind the Bars

You Won’t Believe the Truth From Behind the Bars

Prisons in general seem to have a reputation, but California prisons seem to have some of the worst. However, like most hot topics, people aren’t always completely informed about the problem. People question the integrity of the jail and prison systems. Understanding the prison system in California is the first step in figuring out how to go about possibly fixing any issues.

Most prisoners in California are U.S. citizens. According to the Public Policy of California (PPIC) 81% of prisoners are U.S. citizens, and only 19% are foreign nationalities. 5% of the 19% are from Mexico. This shows that criminals don’t all come from our neighboring countries. This statistic shows that as Americans, we tend to have problems with following the laws of the land.

California’s prison population is big but it’s not the worst. California’s prison population in 2006 was 163,000 inmates. Ten years later the total prison population in California as of 2016 has increased to 1,505,400 according the Bureau of Justice Department. However, this places California 18th in the nation with some of the lowest incarceration rates. It’s expected to see a decrease in prison population as laws continue to change in California.

The incarceration statistics continue to be startling. The age of prisoners is growing as well. Meaning there are more, older prisoners (50 or older) in prison. Not only are they getting older, they’re needing more help medically. In 2016, 30% of prisoners required mental health services. They’re older and are repeat offenders, meaning that they are leaving prison and then being recommitted for more crimes. No one is ever really leaving the system.

California prison statistics aren’t common knowledge. Most people don’t think to look at the stats in regards to prisons because it doesn’t typically affect their lives. Looking at the facts is important for a person to understand what is going on in the world. By having the facts, a person will be able to make informed and educated decisions that could go on to make the world a better place.

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Did You Know This about Carpool Lanes?

Did You Know This about Carpool Lanes?

If you have ever driven on a California freeway, you’ve probably seen a carpool lane before. More recently, they have been renamed to HOV lanes, which stands for High Occupancy Vehicle Lane. These are lanes that are only accessible by vehicles that have more than one occupant in the vehicle. The idea is that by offering a clear lane for only certain vehicles, more people will be encouraged to rideshare and therefore reduce the amount of traffic on the road.

While carpool lanes may parallel and resemble other lanes on the road, they are viewed as different. They have different sets of rules to ensure that they are used properly and effectively. Breaking these rules can get a person pulled over and issued a traffic violation ticket.

One rule that some people do not realize, is that not all carpool lanes are active 24/7. Some lanes are only considered carpool lanes at set times for certain days of the week. These times usually coincide with peak traffic conditions and are often posted on the signs near the lane itself. This means that anyone can drive through the lane when it isn’t during the posted time, but during those times, only vehicles with more than one occupant can use the lane.

When a driver violates the rules of carpool line, they can face a minimum fine of $490 dollars. Repeat offenders will likely face higher fines. Depending on the location, there can also be additional fees if the local city has elected add additional fees in an effort to reduce carpool lane abuse.

Nobody likes dealing with traffic and California seems to have more than its fair share. This isn’t surprising considering that California is the most populated state in the country. However, this is not an excuse to misuse the carpool lane. If a driver wants to be able to use the carpool lane on their way to and from work, then they should find someone to rideshare with. Otherwise they could faces some hefty fines.

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The Truth about Underage Drinking

The Truth about Underage Drinking

It’s almost time for school to begin, which means summer vacations are over and families across the state are heading back home for the new school year. The start of a new school year also marks the reunification of friends after a summer spent apart. If you’re the parent of a teenager, then chances are you know that when teenagers get around one another, rules can be broken.

As Friday night high school football games begin and the weather cools off, teenagers across the state will begin looking for ways to entertain themselves on the weekends. For some, this could mean bowling, going to the movies, or working out. For others, it could be house parties. Without jumping to conclusions or stereotyping, many times, teenagers use house parties as a means to illegally consume alcohol.

As a parent, it is your job to guide your children into making smart and responsible decisions. In California, consuming alcohol under the age of 21 is illegal. Such as many other states around the country, California has very strict and specific laws in place that prohibit anyone under the age of 21 from consuming or being in possession of alcohol.

Read below to learn more about these general underage drinking laws.

• It is illegal for a minor to be in possession of alcohol in a public space. If convicted, a person may face a fine of $250 and be required to complete community service.
• The state of California has a zero-tolerance policy when it comes to underage drinking and driving. If an underage driver is caught with a blood-alcohol level of .01 or higher, they will be charged with a violation of California’s zero-tolerance policy. As consequence, they could be fined and lose their driving privileges for a year or more.
• In addition to the law mentioned above, an underage driver will be charged with a DUI if they are driving or operating a vehicle with a blood-alcohol content of .05 or higher.

 

The items mentioned above are just a few examples of California’s underage drinking laws. However, there are also laws regarding contributing to the delinquency of a minor. As a parent or a person in general, you could be charged with Contributing to the Delinquency of a Minor if you are caught providing underage children alcohol. A minor can also be charged with this if they are caught providing alcohol to someone underage.

When it comes to underage drinking, just don’t. As a parent, it is never too early to begin having open conversations with your child about the consequences of consuming alcohol illegally. We want to ensure your children are equipped with the knowledge and power to make the right decisions.

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Can Climate Change Increase Suicide Rates?

Can Climate Change Increase Suicide Rates?

If you are like most people, than you probably don’t like it when the temperatures rise too high. Here in Southern California it is not unheard of for the temperatures to rise into the triple digits, which is never fun. This kind of heat can be deadly in its own right, but a recent study by researchers at Stanford has found that higher than average temperatures can increase chances of another problem.

The study looked at how climate change can affect the mental health of a person and found that suicide rates increased when temperatures rose above their monthly average. For every 1 degree Celsius rise in temperature, the monthly suicide rate increases by .68% in the United States. This was a noticeable trend that the researchers found after examining statistics from 1968 to 2004.

Here in the United States, suicide is the 10th leading cause of death. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) states that suicide claimed around 45,000 lives in the United States during 2016. This is compared to the roughly 800,000 people who die to suicide every year around the globe.

The belief is that when temperatures rise, they increase the likelihood of a person becoming more depressed, which can lead to a higher risk of suicide. Anyone who has ever had to deal with extreme temperatures knows that they don’t always put a person in a great mood.

For anyone who is depressed and struggling with suicide, it is important to know that you are not alone. There are people out there who are willing to help. The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline can be reached 24/7 by calling 1-800-273-8255. They also have a website that offers additional resources, and can be reached here.

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