Essay - Overcrowding in the Prison System Introduction: Overcrowding in the Prison...

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Overcrowding in the Prison System


Overcrowding in the prison system is a serious problem faced in nations around the globe. Both developed and developing ***** are experiencing *****s that are filled to up to 300 percent of their capacity. In the United States the prison population more than quadrupled between the years of 1978 and 2001 (Marciniak 10). As a result ***** this overcrowding, there is increased incidents of violence, a rampant spread ***** disease in and out of the *****, poorer security in place than if appropriate inmate levels were maintained, higher rates of recidivism, and unhygienic living conditions for *****s. With resources stretched beyond *****, important resocialization ***** reintegration programs become a low priority in the system ("Addressing *****").

Factors in Prison Overcrowd*****g:

As noted, almost every country in the world is ***** an overcrowding ***** their prison systems. This trend is the result of a variety ***** factors. These include: tougher criminal policies ***** view imprisonment as a primary means of punishing criminals. Included in this is "a trend tow*****rd longer sentences reflecting a reaffirmation of the value of punishment and a movement toward ***** determinate sentences and restrictions on early release, thereby reducing the ability of pris***** administrations to deal with overcrowding problems" (Giertz & Nardulli 71) In addition, there is a reduced use of bail and a failure to fully implement early release programs, an increase in crime rates in many countries, and an overburdened, *****efficient criminal justice system ("Addressing Pr*****on").

***** the problem is an ***** in the number of parole violators. Between the years 1980 and 2000, the number of parole violators that were sent back to *****on *****creased from 27,000 to more than 200,000 (Travis).

Challenges as a Result of Prison Overcrowding:

***** of ***** primary challenges with prison overcrowding is simply the inhumanity of ***** situation. Overcrowded pr*****ons have seen more ***** the designed ***** inmates crowded in***** these conf*****ed spaces. This inhumane treatment only serves to perpetuate a wide ***** ***** social ills that plague communities in general ("***** *****").

In *****, overcrowded prison ***** often lead to serious health consequences. Due to overcrowding, prisoners are often forced ***** share beds, bedding ***** personal space. These close living quarters contribute to the spread of a v*****riety of communicable *****s, including Tuberculosis. And, it's not just the ***** that suffer from ***** ***** of dise*****e, disease spread can affect those outside the prison system as well. As an example, the recent outbreaks ***** Tuberculosis in Russia and o*****r former Soviet Union countries have been directly linked to outbreaks in the local prison population, which was exacerbated by ***** overcrowding of the system ("Addressing Prison").

In addition to the spread of *****, overcrowding has also been positively associated with increased tension and violence in prisons. ***** more ***** than ***** system was ***** to accommodate, it is ***** d*****ficult, and sometimes impossible, for prison authorities to prevent *****, let alone gain control once it's occurring.

***** has sometimes resulted in deadly


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