Mindy Tarlow Contributes to Vital City’s

“The Research That Changed My Thinking”


Senior Fellow and Research Professor Mindy Tarlow contributed to Vital City’s “The Research That Changed My Thinking,” a survey where “[p]ractitioners and researchers reflect on a study that shaped their worldview.” In her piece, “Research Plus Power Equals Change,” Tarlow notes:

Armed with [this research] and the positional power of OMB and the deputy mayor’s office, we sought opportunities to expand the use of alternatives to incarceration in New York. And we found a big one in the early 1990s when Mayor David Dinkins launched the Safe Streets, Safe City plan and we prepared to hire thousands of police officers. By calculating the “jail displacement beds” anticipated by alternatives to incarceration, we made a successful argument that no new jail beds were needed. As a result, the city allocated $3 million to incarceration alternatives instead of $50 million to the Department of Correction—this, remember, was in 1990s dollars. The savings funded Beacon Schools—citywide afterschool programs—that remain today.

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