A rally planned next Tuesday seeks to focus on why minorities are over-represented in the state’s prison system. Carlos Jayne — a minister, a lobbyist, and a member of groups including the Justice Reform Consortium — says Iowa’s black population is only about three-percent of the state’s population as a whole, yet blacks make up 25-percent of the prison population within the state. Two years ago, the governor formed a task force on the over-representation of African-Americans in prison and after several meetings it concluded it’s a cause for concern. But Jayne says with economic times hurting the state’s budget, he sees little sign things will improve for minorities in the state. Jayne says Governor Vilsack is calling for sacrifices, and Jayne says when citizens are asked to sacrifice, the ones who’ve already been hurting will wind up hurting more, which Jayne says will be the case with minority populations.
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