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Unit 7 assignment elizabeth hall


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Unit 7 assignment elizabeth hall

  1. 1. 1 Running Header: Inmate Classification in Corrections Inmate Classifications in Correctional Facilities Elizabeth Hall Kaplan University CJ130-02 Introduction to Corrections Amy Ng
  2. 2. Inmate Classification in Corrections 2 Inmate Classifications in Correctional Facilities Introduction When prisoners are taken into a correctional facility, they must pass through an intake system in order to be classified based on what their assessment infers. Classifications in corrections began with the idea that the inmates must be sick, that is why they commit crimes. Our laws specify that we provide total care for inmates including medical, spiritual, and psychiatric needs. Classification used as a tool for treatment has had many issues in our correctional facilities. Currently we use this classification system as a management tool to keep order and control of the inmates. From the early beginnings of classification for medical reasons, to the use today as a control measure, the classification system is a powerful tool for management and treatment of offenders. (Bartollas, 2002) Classification in Corrections Upon arrival in a correctional facility, inmates enter into an assessment center where they are assigned institutions based on what classification the assessment infers. This center is an intake for offenders, and could be located as a part of the facility in larger institutions, or separate. By law, prisoners are entitled to medical care, mental health services, programs, and basic care needs such as spiritual services, visitation rights services, and a sufficient law library. The classification system allows the correctional system to assess inmate’s needs such as, mental health issues, segregation issues, medical and program treatment needs. (Bartollas, 2002) The idea of classification systems started with a psychological treatment approach. The psychological evaluation of the prisoner was the beginning of the treatment process. This idea is called the medical model, and beliefs at the time held that the inmates must be sick. In the
  3. 3. Inmate Classification in Corrections 3 1970’s the reintegration model was built in to the classification system. This model asserts that inmates are processed in three stages, assessment, programming, and evaluation. This model gives the inmates the opportunity to make choices within the opportunities available in the system. It also emphasized the total needs of the individual prisoner. (Bartollas, 2002) Classification used as a tool for treatment has had many issues in our correctional facilities and was reformed into the system we have today. It is used as a tool for management and is more concerned with keeping control and order in the system due to the increasing number of offenders being incarcerated, institutional violence, and the growing number of active prison gang members. Unit management, which is used the most, started in the Federal Bureau of Prisons during the 1970’s, to control gangs. Inmates were classified as gang leaders, normal prisoners with minimal adjustment problems, and extra violent inmates who need to be segregated from the rest of the prisoners. (Bartollas, 2002) The most effective treatment programs are psychological technologies, behavioral therapy, and drug related programs. Psychological technologies refer to psychotherapy, transactional analysis, reality therapy, and the therapeutic community. Behavioral therapy uses positive and negative reinforcement to rehabilitate offenders. Positive reinforcement can include additional privileges, praise, money, or extra attention. Negative reinforcement could be extra confinement, harassment, and ridicule. Drug and substance related programs have augmented in the last few decades. These programs are designed to reduce recidivism by helping offenders deal with addictions, which are an increasing problem with offenders. The programs exist as guest facilities in the system, which allows them to focus more on treatment and less on prison rules and regulations. They are also funded separately so that earmarked funds for the programs go to the programs themselves instead of in the general budget of the facility. They use
  4. 4. Inmate Classification in Corrections 4 treatment methods comparable to those of free citizens instead of traditional prison programs. The providers are not traditionally from prison backgrounds. These programs also require signed statements of program rules, and clear punishments for breaking these rules. One of the best features of these programs is that the providers maintain contact with the inmates in their caseloads after release. Alcoholics and Narcotics anonymous also operate within the correctional system. (Bartollas, 2002) Conclusion From the early beginnings of classification for medical reasons, to the use today as a control measure, the classification system is a powerful tool for management and treatment of offenders. Dealing with the actual problems of inmates instead of just putting them in a cell and forgetting about them is the main goal of these systems and programs involved with the classification process. Helping prisoners meet their medical, spiritual, and addiction problems are effective ways of reducing recidivism. We have come a long way from the dungeons of the 17th and 18th centuries, but there is still much work to be done in figuring effective ways to reduce recidivism.
  5. 5. Inmate Classification in Corrections 5 References: Bartollas, C. (2002). Invitation to Corrections. Boston. Allyn and Bacon Kentucky Corrections, (2007) Classification of the Inmate 501 KAR 6:020. Retrieved from: 7DD432FAB758/125543/1893.pdf