ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — Two new reports from Columbia University are raising questions about New York's probation and parole system — and offering suggestions for making it more effective.

The publications issued Monday were written by corrections experts from around the nation. They examine how inmates are often sent back to jail for technical violations of their parole, such as missing curfew or a meeting with a parole officer.

One of the reports takes a national look at how insufficient funding hurts the effectiveness of parole, while the other examines the situation in New York. It finds that despite success in reducing overall prison populations, the number of inmates re-incarcerated for parole violations is increasing.

The reports recommend shifting the focus of parole from punishment to incentives that help parolees reintegrate into society.

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