July 2nd, 2012
Gaming California’s prisons
The ACLU of California has turned a deadly serious subject — the state’s overcrowded prisons — into a game. Their new online interactive, “Think Outside the Box,” gives users full discretion over the financial future of corrections in California.
It is equal parts game and guided tour through the state’s criminal justice struggles. After players pick funding levels for prison cells and capitol punishment (labeled “My Prison Cuts”), the game cheers up, allowing them to spend the cash they’ve cut from the corrections. Users can horde those dollars or dole them out for schools, police and social programs. 
“We wanted to vividly illustrate there are trade-offs in funding,” Kelli Evans, associate director of the ACLU of Northern California, said of the game’s structure.
What kinds of choices would you make with California prisons’ finances? Try your hand at Think Outside the Box here.
Image via ACLU.

Gaming California’s prisons

The ACLU of California has turned a deadly serious subject — the state’s overcrowded prisons — into a game. Their new online interactive, “Think Outside the Box,” gives users full discretion over the financial future of corrections in California.

It is equal parts game and guided tour through the state’s criminal justice struggles. After players pick funding levels for prison cells and capitol punishment (labeled “My Prison Cuts”), the game cheers up, allowing them to spend the cash they’ve cut from the corrections. Users can horde those dollars or dole them out for schools, police and social programs. 

“We wanted to vividly illustrate there are trade-offs in funding,” Kelli Evans, associate director of the ACLU of Northern California, said of the game’s structure.

What kinds of choices would you make with California prisons’ finances? Try your hand at Think Outside the Box here.

Image via ACLU.

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California Watch, the largest investigative journalism team operating in the state, was launched in 2009 by the nonprofit, nonpartisan Center for Investigative Reporting. Areas of coverage include education, health and welfare, public safety, the environment and the influence of money on the political and regulatory process.

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