Project Milwaukee: Black Men in Prison

WUWM & MPTV Special Series
Why are so many Wisconsinites behind bars?
And, what are the costs?

In the 2010 Census, Wisconsin had the highest percentage of incarcerated black men in the nation. One out of every eight black men of working age is behind bars. In Milwaukee County, more than half of African American men in their thirties have served time in prison.

Over the course of six months, WUWM and MPTV are exploring Wisconsin's high rate of black male incarceration, through expert analysis and personal stories.

Why is the rate so high? How does imprisonment affect the men and their futures, as well as their families, neighborhoods and the region's economy? The series will also investigate recommended solutions.

WUWM & MPTV Town Hall Forum

Tuesday, May 20, 2014
Milwaukee Public Library’s Central Library

WUWM 89.7 FM Reports
on Morning Edition & Lake Effect

Milwaukee Public Television Broadcasts
on ¡Adelante!, Black Nouveau & 4th Street Forum

Contribute Your Ideas
Do you have questions you'd like to have answered? Stories you'd like to share? Please share your questions and comments with us.


Project Milwaukee
1:00 am
Fri December 20, 2013

The Role Driver’s Licenses Play in Black Male Incarceration

Staff at the CDLRE walk clients through the steps necessary to reinstate suspended licenses.
Credit Center for Driver's License Recovery and Employability

One issue that’s come up repeatedly in our Project Milwaukee interviews on the imprisonment of African American males is driving privileges.

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Project Milwaukee
3:24 pm
Tue December 17, 2013

Report: Nearly 100K Driver's Licenses Suspended Each Year in Milwaukee

Something as simple as a broken headlight can lead to a driver's license suspension.
Credit Automobile Association image

Milwaukee NNS reporter Rick Brown talks about his article with Lake Effect's Mitch Teich.

Many of Milwaukee's poorest residents are dealing with a double-whammy when it comes to access to employment: poverty and suspended driving privileges.

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Project Milwaukee
5:00 am
Mon December 9, 2013

Black Men in Prison: Stories Behind the Statistics

Milwaukee County House of Correction in Franklin

For WUWM News, Susan Bence talks with Jarrell Stovall, Tomie Roberson and James Tombs.

Wisconsin incarcerates black men at staggering rates. WUWM's Susan Bence talks with eight men living the statistics. They are currently serving time at the Milwaukee County House of Correction in Franklin.

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Project Milwaukee
1:00 am
Tue November 26, 2013

The Role Poverty, Violence and Despair Play in Black Male Incarceration

Some men wind up behind bars, in part, because they come from environments where incarceration is common

Analysts and advocates say a wide variety of social and cultural factors contribute to the high rate of African American male incarceration in Wisconsin.

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Project Milwaukee
1:00 am
Mon November 25, 2013

Drug Policies From 1990s Led to High Numbers of Incarceration


A study released in spring shows the number of black men imprisoned in Wisconsin began to climb around 1990 and peaked in 2007.

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