The Effect of the 1993 Texas Prison Expansion on the Texas Labor Market
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In 1993, the Texas Department of Criminal Justice began a prison expansion project. From 1993 to 1995, Texas prison capacity nearly doubled. The prison expansion led to a large, exogenous increase in Texas worker imprisonment, therefore making it possible to examine how prison growth altered the labor market opportunities for workers in Texas. Using the economic theory of labor market equilibrium for guidance and a natural experiment methodology for the research design, my thesis evaluates the causal effect of the 1993 Texas prison expansion on employment and real wages of Texas workers.