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Prisons And Jails

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  • 1. Prisons and Jails
  • 2. Prisons There are about 1,325 state prisons and 84 federal prisons in operation in United States today.1 The prison population increased 700% from 1970 to 2005.2 Because of the growth of prison population, the government is going to fund and construct more and more prisons. The rate of crime dropped until recently because the increased rate of incarceration removed from the community those who are likely to reoffend.
  • 3. Characteristics of prisons About 68% of state prisoners lack a high school diploma. Half are functionally illiterate. About 53% of state prisoners are dependent on drugs. The work histories and skills of prisoners are well below those of the general population.3
  • 4. Purposes of prisons  One of the purposes of prisons is to rehabilitate and help inmates who are lacking a high school diploma, illiterate, or dependent on drugs.  The central aim of a true prison system is the protection of society against crime, not the punishment of criminals.(Zebulon R. Brockway, 1827-1920).
  • 5. Overcrowding  Prison overcrowding can be measured along a number of dimensions.  Space available per inmate.  Length of confinement of inmates in cells or housing units.  Living arrangements.  Type of housing.
  • 6. Prison capacity Rated capacity refers to the size of the inmate population that a facility can handle according to the judgment of experts. Operational capacity is the number of inmates that a facility can effectively accommodate based on an appraisal of the institution’s staff, programs, and services. Design capacity refers to the inmate population that the institution was originally built to handle.
  • 7. Maximum security levels  High fences.  Thick walls.  Secure cells.  Gun tower.  Armed prison guards.
  • 8. Medium security level  Prison yard.  Exercise room.  Library.  Showers.
  • 9. Minimum security level  Recreational, educational, and skill training programs.  No fences.  No gun towers.  No armed guards. The above is also used a type of classification system with more serious offenders put in maximum security facilities and less serious offenders in medium to minimum security facilities.
  • 10. Federal Prison System Beside the operations of state prisons, the Federal Prison System operates simultaneously: 103 institutions. 6 regional offices. The Central Office. 2 staff-training centers. 28 community correction offices.4
  • 11. Jails A similar aspect to prison is Jail. Jails are locally operated, short-term confinement facilities. There are total of 3,360 jails that operate throughout the United States today.5
  • 12. Purposes of Jails Readmitting probation, parole, bail-bond violators. Detaining juveniles, mental ill temporarily. Transferring inmates to federal, states, or other authorities. Holding inmates sentenced to short term ( under 1 year). Releasing convicted inmates to the community upon completion of their sentences, etc… Operating community –based programs with day reporting, home detention, electronic monitoring, or other types of supervision.
  • 13. Problems of Jails  Women in jails occupy 12% of jail population.6  Many of them are drugs addicts, illiterate.  Because the lack of female officers who work in jails, women in jails are at risk to be abused by male staff.(Ibid., p.6).
  • 14. Children born in jails  Many women are pregnant before going to jails.  There fore, few hundred children are born in jail each year.  Their mothers may have to pay for their support.
  • 15. Disadvantages of jails Being run by people that are too old. Poorly funded.(The cost for incarcerating an inmate is about $47,000 per year, but only $17,000 in jail). Poorly trained employees. Overcrowded. Misused of detention.
  • 16. Conclusion Building new prisons and jails may be good because they create more jobs locally that impact a part of the economy. It can stand to help with overcrowding if enough are built. Nowadays, the government has plans for improving and developing jails systems as well prisons systems. The private prison is also a solution for avoiding “overcrowded”.
  • 17. Sources1. Washington DC: Bureau of Justice Statistics, 2003.2. Philadelphia: Pew, February 2007, p.1.3. Kessler, The Impending Crime Wave, p.7.4. Federal Bureau of Prisons, Staff Breakdown, http://www.bop.gov/about/facts.jsp #5.5. Stephan, Census of Jails, 1999.6. American Jails, Vol. 4, No. 3. William Reginald Mills and Heather Barrett.