Term Paper: Criminal Justice: Challenges and Developments

Pages: 8 (2381 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: 1+  ·  Level: College Senior  ·  Topic: Criminal Justice  ·  Buy for $19.77

SAMPLE EXCERPT:

[. . .] Furthermore family and friends not connected professionally with the department should also be enlisted in monitoring police officers for any signs of excessive stress or possible substance abuse.

Whether the problem belongs to criminals or officers of the law, it is important for the criminal justice system to employ policies of zero tolerance with alcohol and drug abuse problems. As seen above, studies have shown that tax dollars are saved when rehabilitative programs are implemented and used sufficiently. When the cyclic pattern of substance abuse is therefore halted or at least reduced, the final effect is that the crime rate is reduced.

The Role of Information Technology

Information technology has affected nearly all areas of life, and all professions. Using this technology can significantly reduce several problems, including monitoring the need for rehabilitation among prisoners, within the criminal justice system. The possibilities for reducing the crime rate via more effective telecommunication are endless. Officers on street duty could also be assured of greater protection through such technology, and paperwork could be finished at more efficient rates, providing more time for more important crime fighting activities.

According to Rogers, upgrading IT systems across the police network will furthermore provide many job opportunities for IT professionals. Furthermore the involvement of IT technology provides a further sector of society to be involved in police work on a temporary or freelance basis, once again raising the issue of public trust. Police work can no longer be seen in isolation from the general public. The trust of the public is vitally important for successfully fighting crime, and for this, communication is important, as mentioned numerous times above.

Communication with the public is currently occurring very prominently through the Internet, with a number of police departments displaying information on their Web sites. Furthermore the public is invited and encouraged to contact these departments via email, along with which some of these sites also display information relating to recruitment and involvement in the police department.

Information technology thus takes community policing to a further level. A two-way channel of communication is established by which the police provided information relating to a variety of factors to the public, while the public is allowed to raise complaints, make suggestions and offer encouragement. Inter-organizational communication can also be improved via password-protected Web sites, where police officers and other officials can participate in courses or receive information vital to successfully fighting, reducing and preventing crime.

IT advances is especially important in large organizations such as criminal justice. It facilitates communication throughout the country, reducing the possibility of corruption while providing the same information unequivocally to a large number of recipients.

IT, like the correct implementation of sufficient rehabilitating services for prisoners, will also save the government and thus the taxpayer money. Government and police services will be run more efficiently if IT is upgraded and used to its full potential within the different departments. Case management capabilities will for example be more effective, since all criminal justice officials involved will be able to communicate by means of IT systems. In this way all cases and proceedings, are clear at all stages to all involved officials. Inefficiencies and delays, so often receiving criticism in the criminal justice system, can thus be reduced significantly with modernized IT systems.

Furthermore the opportunity and temptation of corruption can be significantly reduced with IT systems. Monitoring of work performance relating to for example drug schemes can significantly reduce the possibility of corrupt police work and the temptation to succumb to substance abuse. Furthermore surveillance by means of IT can ensure that all prisoners' rights are respected at all times, furthermore enhancing public trust.

Conclusion

It is my belief that many individuals within the criminal justice system take the job very seriously and sincerely attempt to advocate and adhere to the law. It is these individuals who ensure that the country adheres to the democratic principles that have been part of the Constitution since its inception.

Through advanced technology power can once again be placed in public hands in order to ensure that government corruption and prison growth can be reduced. Rather, the better paradigms of the criminal justice system can then be advocated by IT systems. The connection of individuals and communities by means of IT can then be used as a tool to ensure that corruption, whether by individuals or large corporations is increasingly difficult to occur in a clandestine manner.

Criminal justice should be exactly that. Criminals should receive sentences that are just while not being excessive. The police department should make the community instead of the government and corporations their priority, as it was meant to be in the first place.

Bibliography

Parenti, Christian. "The 'New' Criminal Justice System: State Repression from 1968 to 2001." In Monthly Review, July 2001. Society for the Advancement of Education, 2002. Online Article Database: www.findarticles.com.

Polcin, Douglas L. "Factors associated with probation officers' use of criminal justice coercion to mandate alcohol treatment." In American Journal of Drug and Alcohol Abuse, August 2003. Marcel Dekker, Inc., 2003. Online Article Database: www.findarticles.com.

Rogers, James. "Criminal justice modernisation will create hundreds of IT jobs." In Computer Weekly, August 1, 2002.… [END OF PREVIEW]

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