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Kevin Carr, secretary of the Wisconsin Department of Corrections, says his agency during the pandemic instructed parole and probation officers to incarcerate only those violators who posed a risk to the public. “You can assess the nature of the contact and determine that there’s no reason to hold that person in custody for three days or more, disrupt their lives, put their jobs and housing at risk,” he says. He is seen during an interview with Wisconsin Watch at the department’s headquarters in Madison, Wis., on June 19, 2019.

Incarceration after COVID: how the pandemic could permanently change jails and prisons

The COVID-19 pandemic spurred decarceration efforts once seen as unthinkable, but advocates want more action.

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Opinion

Your Right to Know: No private email accounts for public business

Shockingly, in Wisconsin it’s perfectly legal for government officials to use their personal emails to do government work. Even though a government entity may have no ability to access personal accounts and even though it’s ridiculously easy to use personal emails to hide conversations from the public, these practices are still allowed.

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We are proud to present our annual reports to showcase the work we’ve done throughout the year and to further show our commitment to our mission and guiding values.

Students at Northwestern University profiled Wisconsin Watch, showcasing our story about disparities in curfew tickets given to Black Wisconsin residents in the summer of 2020.

The video project was part of a program called Medill Explores at the Medill School of Journalism, Media, Integrated Marketing Communications. You can read more about that project here.

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