Census of State and Federal Adult Correctional Facilities, 2012 (ICPSR 37294)

Version Date: Sep 15, 2020 View help for published

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United States. Bureau of Justice Statistics



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  • V1 [2020-02-06] unpublished
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The 2012 Census of State and Federal Correctional Facilities (CSFCF) was the eighth enumeration of state institutions and the fifth enumeration of federal institutions sponsored by the Bureau of Justice Statistics and its predecessors. Earlier censuses were conducted in 1974, 1979 (ICPSR 7852), 1984 (ICPSR 8444), 1990 (ICPSR 9908), 1995 (ICPSR 6953), 2000 (ICPSR 4021), and 2005 (ICPSR 24642). For each facility in the 2012 census, information was provided on security level, facility operator, sex of inmates housed, one-day counts by sex, percentage of inmates authorized to leave the facility, and anticipated changes to or closures of the facility.

The census counted prisoners held in the facilities, a custody count. Some inmates in custody in one jurisdiction may be held for a different jurisdiction. The custody count is distinct from a count of inmates under a correctional authority's jurisdiction, which includes all inmates over whom a correctional authority exercises control, regardless of where the inmate is housed. A jurisdictional count is more inclusive than a prison custody count and includes state and federal prisoners housed in local jails or other non-correctional facilities.

United States. Bureau of Justice Statistics. Census of State and Federal Adult Correctional Facilities, 2012. Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research [distributor], 2020-09-15. https://doi.org/10.3886/ICPSR37294.v2

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United States Department of Justice. Office of Justice Programs. Bureau of Justice Statistics


Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research

The facility universe was developed from the Census of State and Federal Adult Correctional Facilities conducted in 2005. Each state's department of corrections was contacted to identify new facilities that had opened and facilities that had been closed since December 2005. Facilities were included in the enumeration if they were: (1) staffed with federal, state, local, or private employees, (2) held inmates primarily for state adult correctional authorities or the Federal Bureau of Prisons, (3) were physically or functionally separate from other facilities, and (4) were operational on June 30, 2012.

The census included the following types of adult correctional facilities:

  • Prisons, penitentiaries, and correctional institutions
  • Boot camps
  • Residential community correction centers
  • Prison farms
  • Reception, diagnostic, and classification centers
  • Road camps, forestry camps, and conservation camps
  • Youthful offender facilities except in California
  • Vocational training facilities
  • Prison hospitals, including secure wings in public hospitals staffed with correctional security personnel
  • Drug and alcohol treatment facilities for prisoners
  • Pre-release centers and halfway houses
  • State-authorized parolee return-to-custody facilities
  • State-operated local detention facilities in Alaska, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Rhode Island, and Vermont

The census excluded the following types of institutions:

  • Jails and other local and regional detention facilities
  • Private facilities holding primarily for authorities other than the state adult correctional departments or the Federal Bureau of Prisons
  • Military facilities
  • Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) facilities
  • Bureau of Indian Affairs facilities
  • Detention facilities operated by the Federal Bureau of Prisons intended to hold inmates who are unsentenced
  • Facilities operated by or for local government, including those housing state prisoners
  • Facilities operated by the United States Marshals Service
  • Hospital wings and wards not operated or staffed by correctional authorities
  • Facilities that hold only juveniles

correctional facility


2020-09-15 Updated Series Information and Abstract sections of codebook to reflect changes requested by BJS data steward.

2020-02-06 ICPSR data undergo a confidentiality review and are altered when necessary to limit the risk of disclosure. ICPSR also routinely creates ready-to-go data files along with setups in the major statistical software formats as well as standard codebooks to accompany the data. In addition to these procedures, ICPSR performed the following processing steps for this data collection:

  • Performed recodes and/or calculated derived variables.
  • Checked for undocumented or out-of-range codes.


  • The public-use data files in this collection are available for access by the general public. Access does not require affiliation with an ICPSR member institution.

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This dataset is maintained and distributed by the National Archive of Criminal Justice Data (NACJD), the criminal justice archive within ICPSR. NACJD is primarily sponsored by three agencies within the U.S. Department of Justice: the Bureau of Justice Statistics, the National Institute of Justice, and the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention.