The Lack of Effectiveness of Prison in America
Who Is In Prison?
When we think about the people who are in prison, the idea is that these are criminals who deserve to be put away. Not only do we want prisoners to be away from the public, but the idea is that prisoners are also getting rehabilitated. In this way, once prisoners are released, they are able to get back into society and be good contributors. Even though that is a general idea, it is plain to see that this is not what’s happening. According to research, prison is not as effective as it should be when it comes to reducing crime. Even though prison does get dangerous people off of the street, it only puts them back on the street when their time is up. Since it is so obvious that the prison system is not working when it comes to improving society, then why do we still put inmates in prison?
What Does the Proof Show?
According to a study that was done in England in 2015, the rate of recidivism in ex-prisoners is extremely high. More than half of ex-prisoners go out to commit crimes again. Not only are they committing crimes again, but the crimes become even more violent. The reason that the crimes are more violent is that these individuals have been taught how to be more violent in prison. The truth is that humans are influenced by their surroundings, and if you put an individual who has committed crimes in the past with other individuals who have committed even more heinous crimes, that person will only learn to be a more heinous criminal. Apart from that, once a person has a criminal record, it can be difficult to find housing and a job. Combine that with the fact that this person will generally go on to return to the same environment that made him or her get into prison in the first place. There has to be a better way.
What About Restorative Justice
The restorative justice system is a system that several countries in Europe are beginning to implement. This is a system that does not only punish an individual who commits a crime, but it teaches this individual about the impact that his or her crime had on society. The individual talks things through with the victims that were impacted by the crime and a professional moderator. They all find a suitable solution. Apart from that, the perpetrator of the crime is able to apologize and rectify the crime. After that, a suitable recompense is found. This can be carried out in the form of community service or in another way that the victims choose. Restorative justice has proven to be extremely effective. Nine out of ten prisoners who have gone through the restorative justice process have found success in it. Not only are they able to return back to society as better individuals, but the victims are able to come to peace as well.
Justice for All
Individuals who commit crimes do deserve to pay for the damage that they have done to society. At the same time, it is imperative to make sure that their punishment is effective. If individuals are just going back into society and committing more damage to society. At the same time, we want to make sure that their punishment is effective. If individuals are just going back into society and committing more crimes, not only has their punishment been unsuccessful, but they have not been rehabilitated. The justice system has to work harder at finding more effective ways to rehabilitate prisoners so that our society, as a whole, can continue to improve.