Do Prisons Rehabilitate? Essay

1546 words - 6 pages

Do Prisons Rehabilitate?

In this essay, I shall be focusing on the whether or Prisons rehabilitate offenders. I will
do this by focusing mainly on the Prison Service in England & Wales, the reason for
this, being that the data and statistics for England & Wales are easier to obtain than
that of other countries. The main information I will be referring to will be the rates of
conviction, types of imprisonment, types of non-custodial sentences. Also I will
explore some of the current methods of offender rehabilitation.

Her Majesty’s Prison Service is composed of two main types of prisons, they are open
and closed prisons. Following the Mountbatten Report (1965) Prisoners were placed
into security categories, ranging from category A (high risk prisoner - escape would
pose a serious risk to the public or state) to category D (low risk prisoner - can be
trusted in open prison conditions).

Prisons have four major purposes, they are; retribution, incapacitation, deterrence and
rehabilitation. Retribution means punishment for crimes against society. Prisons serve
to deprive criminals of their freedom is a way of making them pay a debt to society for
their crimes. Incapacitation refers to the removal of criminals from society so that they
can no longer harm innocent people. Deterrence means the prevention of future crime,
it is hoped that bye imprisoning a criminal, it deters them from committing the crime
again and also deters others from committing crime. Rehabilitation refers to activities
designed to change criminals into law abiding citizens, and may include providing
educational courses in prison, teaching job skills and offering counselling with a
psychologist or social worker. Over many years the focus of the prison service has
switched between the four purposes, therefore at different times in history the
importance of rehabilitation has fluctuated.

“Her Majesty’s Prison Service serves the public by keeping in custody those
committed by the courts. Our duty is to look after them with humanity and help them
lead law-abiding and useful lives in custody and after release.”

The above statement of purpose is that of Her Majesty’s Prison Service. As can be
seen from the statement, there seems to be a focus on incapacitation and rehabilitation.

Over many years, people’s attitude towards how to deal with prisoners has changed,
this was reflected by the Gladstone Report in 1895 which said that ‘we start from the
principle that prison treatment should have as its primary and concurrent objects,
deterrence and reformation’.

In general, it would be fair to say that the majority of people in England and Wales
would agree with the statement that prisons are not working. The reason for this is
that on average 50% of prisoners within 2 years of release will reoffend. Hence this
shows that prisons do not rehabilitate everyone who passes through them, Norman
Brennan is quoted below saying that it is not...

Find Another Essay On Do Prisons Rehabilitate?

America’s Prisons and Their Effects On Society

2066 words - 8 pages have failed in their attempts to separate and rehabilitate. Not only do prisons separate the criminals from the innocent, to be effective, according to Lappin and Greene, they must also separate the criminals from the worse criminals. Convicts in prison for non-violent offenses are not supposed to be housed with violent offenders. “Unfortunately, our prisons are becoming more and more overcrowded making it harder to make these separations

Visions of Prisons in the Future

2471 words - 10 pages usually have large interior cellblocks and about one in four State prisons are maximum security (Snarr 1992, Pg. 121).Double fences topped with barred wire enclose medium custody prisons. The housing architecture is varied and consists of outside cell- blocks in units of 150 cells or less, dormitories and cubicles. There are about 39 percent of all prisons that are medium security (Snarr 1992, Pg. 122).Minimum custody prisons do not have armed posts

Copromising Humans For Cash

987 words - 4 pages Private prisons have no place in a democratic society. Profiting from the incarceration of human beings compromises public safety and corrupts justice. Private companies only goal is to produce a profit. They achieve this goal by treating inmates as less than humans, completely disregarding their needs as human beings and denying them the opportunity to rehabilitate. This lack of rehabilitation increases the odds of inmates becoming repeat

Raniqua Wilson Reading 6 Challenges of Managing Mentally Ill Offenders

976 words - 4 pages enjoy working at. Direct supervision jails and prisons approach is just different and it actually works. “If you can’t rehabilitate, at least do no harm.” ( ) Traditional jails and prisons are causing more harm than anything to many inmates, but they were created to help rehabilitate inmates while incarceration. It seems as through sight of rehabilitation has been lost inside these jails and prison and more harm is being done. That is a problem

The Punishment of Probation- A Proposed Solution to the Prison Overcrowding Problem in England

877 words - 4 pages Since 1993 the population within prison is increasing leading to majority of prison overcrowding this meaning there is now a higher percentage of people in prison here in England than any other country in Western Europe (Howard League 2006). This is leading to re-offending as offenders are not able to receive individual rehabilitation because there are too many offenders to rehabilitate. As this becomes more of a problem in today’s society the

The Purpose of Prisons

824 words - 3 pages a life of crime. These programs are working great because 75% of prisoners do not return to prison once they get out. This is proof that the prisons are doing their job in rehabilitating prisoners. Prisons not only rehabilitate, but they also deter people from going to prison. The fear of going to prison is a great deterrence for a perspective criminal. Hard life styles along with loss of freedom tend to push the criminal away from the

The Public-Private Prison Debate

2472 words - 10 pages facilities should be required to do the same (Civic Impulse, LLC, 2011).  H.R. 223: Federal Prison Bureau Nonviolent Offender Relief Act of 2011 – This bill asks for an amendment to title 18 of the United States Code, allowing for changing the release date of inmates who have been convicted of nonviolent crimes. As prisons become overcrowded, the government is looking for ways to reduce the inmate population, including early release. Private

The Mission of the Correctional System

1291 words - 5 pages them, requiring commitment, hard work, and delivery against the aims of their agreed sentence plans. Most prisons offer programs that will help the offender to rehabilitate, such programs can help the offender with anger management, domestic violence, drink & driving, alcohol abuse, and drug rehabilitation. Personally I believe that we should work hard on rehabilitating all offenders but especially the juveniles because they are not as competent as

The Death Penalty

635 words - 3 pages ever so abundant in prisons, the chance for crime to continue is almost a guarantee. Statistics on prisons from the U.S. Department of Justice state in 2002, “that the homicide rate was four in every 100,000 and violent crime was nineteen in every 100,000.” As the population rises in prison, so do the crime rates. We can only continue to lock people up for so long; prisons are already crowded enough as it is. Locking the doors on someone and

Private Prisons

752 words - 4 pages and mistreatment. Privatization of prisons is unlawful and often leads to corruption. Prisons were first established to fill a need to punish and rehabilitate inmates, but by looking at prisons as opportunities to gain a profit, the very inmates were try to help and educate end up being sought after like cattle and treated as such. These for-profit prisons fail to prove that they are cost efficient, more effective in management, or give better

Early Prisons and Punishments

822 words - 4 pages branding. Depending on the crime judges would do hard labor for punishment (Punishment and Corrections in American History). Judges began to show more mercy to certain criminals. Rather than just existing to punish criminals, prisons would set goals to rehabilitate offenders through education (Early American Crime). Judges and prisons would also rehabilitate through skilled labor (Early American Crime). Corrections in America would also dedicate

Similar Essays

Rehabilitation Or Retribution? Essay

967 words - 4 pages Justice Studies, 2000). In this essay, it will argue that rehabilitation is a more efficient way to help prisoners rather than retribution by illustrating advantages of rehabilitation.Some theorists throughout history have argued that the primary purpose of prisons is to punish criminals for what they have done, criminals should get punished when they break the law. When they are sent into prisons, as punishment, they certainly do not have rights

Is Recidivism Inevitable? Essay

990 words - 4 pages Prisons are intended not only to hold prisoners, but, also to rehabilitate them and turn them into productive members of society. Though it seems prisons are not doing their job correctly, most prisons, either due to budget constraints or corrupt officers, do not try to rehabilitate them. They serve their time and then are thrown back into the world worse criminals than before. The prison system, in its current form, is flawed. It is nearly

Julie Foushi Essay

2256 words - 10 pages would act worse and refuse to do anything for themselves. Most of us know that the word punishment means a penalty inflicted on an offender through judicial procedure; suffering, pain, or loss that serves as retribution. As well as rehabilitate is to restore to former state. So why should prisons or jails rehabilitate instead of being punitive? "Punishing offenders is something we take for granted. We expect that those who break the law will be

Intermediate Sanctions And Shock Probation Essay

2202 words - 9 pages Prisons The prison remains as the basic way in which a just society could punish, avoid recurrence of crime and rehabilitate the criminal offenders. Recently, the government empowered bodies have bestowed the prison powers by the public. The present-day development of privatized prison system has seen new prison structure being placed. The introduction of the private prisons however is viewed by many as the change of the goals of the