Viability of Treatment in Prisons
The Federal Bureau of Prisons (BOP), which is the body that deals with matters concerning a criminal conviction, law enforcement, and the treatment of the prisoners in the correctional facilities, has improved its terms of engagement. Since the riots in Attica prison, the government responded to the prisoners’ issues, a situation that improved the prisoners’ livelihoods while at the correctional facilities. Currently, most of the correctional facilities have adopted various ethical considerations for the prisoners. Now, prisoners are viewed as normal citizens who should not be mistreated, as before the Attica prison uprising. One of the major changes in prison operations is introducing the training system where convicts are allowed to attend prison-based schools and further their education. Other training facilities such as carpentry, dressmaking, and other technical jobs are being offered in most prisons. The rehabilitation treatment’s key goal is to come up with good citizens when the time of release for the prisoners come. The American judicial system holds approximately 2.3 million inmates in its diverse levels of prisons (Sawyer & Wagner, 2020). More than 650,000 inmates are released from the American prisons to the community each year, with approximately ten thousand being released per week. A state like California releases an approximate number of 130,000 prisoners to the community yearly (Taylor, 2017). According to the statistics, almost three-quarters of the released inmates are likely to be taken back to prison within three years for committing the same crimes. The issue of being re-arrested is witnessed despite the increased adoption of rehabilitation programs in American prisons. Therefore, the bigger question comes in where the public wonders whether the rehabilitation programs adopted by the prisons help produce more friendly prisoners at the end of their jail term. Are the results of rehabilitation worth the capital invested in the programs? Therefore, this paper proposes to discuss the suitability of rehabilitation treatment adopted by American prisons.
Rehabilitation programs in the jails were invented with the aim of producing more community viable citizens at the end of their jail time. Reducing the recidivism rate was a major area of concern as many prisoners would still commit the same crime or get engaged in another form of crime and even a bigger one within a short period after their release. Thus, despite the improvement of the treatment in the prisons and incorporation of the rehabilitation measures, there seems to be more need to revise the system with the aim of improving its end results.
Rehabilitation programs are one of the major amendments in the prison department that have improved the livelihood of the prisoners after their imprisonment while at the same time making sure that they are treated well in the recreational facilities. Thus, rehabilitation, despite its inability to meet the expected goals of improving the inmates after imprisonment life, is a major improvement that has been evidenced in the prisons. The Federal Beaural of Prison in the united stated has amended major areas of concern that have been drailing the rehabilitation program.
One of the key aims is to establish job opportunities for the inmates while in the rehabilitation program. Unemployment is known as one of the most causes of crime cases, especially the ones related to theft, robbery, and computer crimes. Creating job opportunities has been one of the key issues that the Federal Bureau of prisons is dedicated to solving. Therefore, the prison body has increased the training of the inmates with marketable skills for jobs that will increase their preference in acquiring jobs after their release from the jails. The inmates who have acquired educational skills are less likely to get back to prison. The introduction of a school district under the federal prison system has been a key boost to the rehabilitation program. The creation of the district school under the prison Beural has also helped in generating able ex-inmates who can help the community.
In an investigation that involved prisoners from the UK, USA, and Scotland, education to prisoners on arts and other formal programs shows to improve their interaction skills, including enhancement of group work and decline of the criminal identities they possessed before the recreational program (Tett et al., 2012). The prisoners’ involvement from the three selected prisons in the art project devised a good sensitization culture while developing both verbal and writing skills for the individual prisoners. The self-acceptance level for the prisoners and confidence in their abilities were seen to improve as they cooperated in the development of their self-created projects. The prisoners who developed and performed their creations for the public audience shown to have advanced in their personal and social identities, which acted as a form of encouragement to help the prisoners have good plans for their future lives and desist from criminal activities.
The Federal Bureau of Prisons also devised a program that focuses on the rehabilitation of prisoners from drug abuse. Some of the convicted criminals have their crime intentions being arisen by their desire to access drugs. Thus, a responsible way to correct such individuals’ behaviour and change their criminal intentions is to help them overcome their addictions. Drug abuse has been highlighted as the major cause of the injustices and unethical acts in the modern community. The use of drugs also affects the prisoners while in the creational facility, whereby the addicts and those involved in drug trafficking devise ways to access them and continue abusing them and selling the surplus while still in prison. This has not only increased the instances of crime in the community but also inside the prisons. Thus, one task that the prison Bureau is assigned with is identifying the individual’s drive to crime and dealing with it from the start of the jail sentence.
There are a large number of prisoners who have been incarcerated in the USA prisons for involvement in crimes where the primary drive was drug abuse. About 50% of the criminals held in the US prisons for cases emanating from drug abuse need to be treated for substance abuse in medical facilities. When these old strategies of curbing drug abuse were evaluated compared to the new approach of offering drug rehabilitation in the prisons, the judicial system’s method bore more positive outcomes in terms of cost and the advantages to the community. For instance, four out of five candidates who are taken for justice-based rehabilitation against drug abuse showed more positive gains in terms of their contribution to community development (Zarkin et al.,2012).
The rehabilitation program also aims at enhancing the prisoners’ physical and mental health. This aim is met through the establishment of specific restrictive living places for the inmates undergoing various mental sicknesses. Most of the inmates with mental illnesses are considered unnecessarily violent or mistreated succumb to exploitation from other inmates. The USA’s prison board also hires qualified psychologists to deal with adverse cases of mental illnesses among inmates. The prisons have also been equipped with well-facilitated hospitals that handle medical issues for the inmates (Gallant et al., 2015). There has also been the incorporation of sports and cultural festivals among inmates, which acts as a motivation to help the prisoners improve their behaviours. The sports and recreational incorporation in the prison setting showed to improve the mental wellness, physical health as well as the behavioural conduct of individual prisoners. These results are valid as for the study conducted in four Australian jails.
Despite the advantages that are connected to prisoner rehabilitation treatment, the adoption of the rehabilitation comes with great challenges. One of the most evidenced challenges in the use of prisoner rehabilitation is the financial investment that is needed to efficiently equip the prisons and to facilitate some of the events focused towards increasing the prisoners’ quality of life while in prison (Taylor, 2017). For instance, the incorporation of the medical facilities in the prison setting is a task that requires a lot of financial investment a reason why most of the prisons have delayed to fully equip their medical centres. The recreational and sports activity that has been recommended for the improvement of inmates health also require a capital investment which at times is hard for the government to achieve.
The incorporation of some rehabilitation measures does not bear the expected results compared to the financial investment directed towards their incorporation. The major blame has been directed towards the lack of evidence-based strategies in the adoption of the rehabilitation program (Taylor, 2017). This is a case that the Federal Bureau of Prisons needs to pay attention to and come with well laid down procedures for each rehabilitation practice based on evidence and research. This will ensure that the adopted practices lead to positive results at a lower cost.
Rehabilitation treatment is one way that the Federal Bureau can continue using to ensure inmates’ correctional practice is achieved as required. There has been some improvement in using the rehabilitation treatment in the prisons as opposed to the era when they were not applied. The prison body needs to research some of the methods used in the rehabilitation program to ensure that all the procedures are cost-effective and evidence-based. Improving the rehabilitation practices will ensure that the community does not suffer in the ex-inmates’ hands after they are released at the end of their jail term. The rehabilitation programs come with some challenges, such as financial investment and research, to ensure their incorporation is successful. The government should be willing to sacrifice some revenue to support such programs in the prison in an effort to ensure they release able and well-behaved citizens from the prisons who will no longer be a burden to the community.