Corrections - Criminal Justice Issues Essay

Pages: 4 (1084 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: 0  ·  File: .docx  ·  Level: College Senior  ·  Topic: Criminal Justice

Corrections - Criminal Justice Issues

ISSUES in CRIMINAL JUSTICE ADMINISTRATION

Can we operate safe, effective prison?

Imprisonment as a form of punishment is almost always associated with much higher rates of violence in correctional facilities than in society outside of prisons.

According to the experts, the risk of assault in prison may be as much as ten times higher than in society. The factors responsible for violence in prison are the nature of the prison population itself, because those sentenced to imprisonment are, by definition, those in society who are most prone to violent behavior. The close quarters and tensions associated with living in the prison environment give rise to gang affiliation in prison and to corresponding conflicts among different prison gangs. One of the most important contributing factors to violence in prison is overcrowded conditions, such as those that, in retrospect, are considered to have been responsible for causing the New York State Attica riot in 1971 and the California prison riot in Santa Fe in 1980. In that respect, avoiding prison overcrowding is considered one of the most important ways to prevent large-scale violence in correctional facilities.

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Some of the strategies for reducing prison overcrowding are implemented on the "front end" such as alternative sentencing formats that provide non-incarceration sanctions for appropriate candidates and so-called "back-end" strategies, such as increased use of early release in conjunction with supervised parole. Capacity expansion in the form of renovating existing facilities and constructing new facilities is the third main method of avoiding prison violence attributable to overcrowding. While prison violence is unlikely ever to be eliminated entirely, a combined strategy of front-end, back-end, and capacity expansion can reduce it enough to ensure maximum safety.

2. Should small jails be consolidated into larger, regional facilities?

Essay on Corrections - Criminal Justice Issues Issues in Assignment

From the perspective of maintaining the safest possible conditions in jails, smaller size is more conducive to strict control over inmates and prevention of violence within correctional institutions. However, from the perspective of improving other elements of incarceration, small jails are comparatively less able to benefit from federal funds, primarily because it is much harder to justify such expenditures for institutions whose programs provide services to small inmate communities.

On the other hand, to the extent rehabilitation and reduction in recidivism after release back to the community is a goal of incarceration, it may make more sense to consolidate smaller jails into larger regional facilities. In larger facilities, jail administrators have a greater opportunity to implement programs designed to rehabilitate prisoners rather than just confining them until their scheduled date of release. Larger facilities are more eligible for federal funding for such programs. However, since approximately half of all jail inmates have not yet been convicted of a crime, it is difficult to emphasize rehabilitation and anti-recidivism programs. In that regard, one of the most important factors militating against the consolidation of smaller jails into larger regional facilities is the state's responsibility to protect prisoners from harm while they are in custody. Whatever the moral duty and constitutional obligations of the state to protect the safety, health, and welfare of convicted criminals, that duty is even greater with respect to un-convicted jail inmates who may, in fact, eventually be acquitted of their charges at trial. From that perspective, the… [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

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Corrections - Criminal Justice Issues.  (2008, November 28).  Retrieved November 28, 2020, from https://www.essaytown.com/subjects/paper/corrections-criminal-justice-issues/36997

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