Tag: Prisons Privatization

Prisons Privatization Discussion Questions With Sample Answers

In light of the economic struggles that many states are facing today, every area of the criminal justice system is coming under scrutiny, especially as it relates to the expenditures of taxpayer monies. One of the most hotly contested areas is that of the privatization of prisons. Respond to the following questions, and support your position using credible research:

Primary Task Response: Within the Discussion Board area, write 400–600 words that respond to the following questions with your thoughts, ideas, and comments. This will be the foundation for future discussions by your classmates. Be substantive and clear, and use examples to reinforce your ideas:

  • What are some of the advantages and disadvantages of prison privatization? Explain in your own words.
  • What impact does the privatization of prisons have on providing rehabilitative services that would help prisoners rejoin society productively and curb recidivism? Explain.
  • What impact does contracting with a private firm have on governmental liability for the violation of inmates’ constitutional rights? Explain.
  • Some would argue that for-profit private prisons have no place in a democratic society. Do you agree? Use external research to justify your response.
  • Should Prisons be Privatized?

CJUS675 – Privatization of Prisons – Argumentative Essay

CJUS675-1404B-01 Special Topics in Criminal Justice  –  Privatization of Prisons

  • For this assignment, research and present the arguments for and against the privatization of prisons.
  • Offer your policy position on the privatization of prisons either for or against, and under what circumstances.
  • Include a title page, abstract, and separate reference page.

Note: Be careful in selecting your source because both the corporations that run private prisons and the labor unions that oppose them have reason to slant their information (one way that private prisons save money is by hiring nonunion personnel at lower wages and with fewer benefits), so be sure to use multiple sources and cross-check your facts.

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Should Prisons be Privatized? – NO

Correctional facilities around the world emerged as entities tasked with the confinement of various types of offenders. Safety for the general public is usually of the utmost importance to a nation with prisons serving as an ideal area to put away persons posing a threat to others. These facilities are meant to offer a reeducation routine with the intention to transform their character while ensuring that they atone for their offenses.  In essence, these individuals become “guests of the state”; the establishment was in charge of the incarceration and the management of prisons. However, there are occasions when a government decides to agree with for-profit entities in the housing of these individuals while bolstering its mandate. Private prisons are third parties that serve as an integral entity of the criminal justice system that aids the government in performing its duty. The earliest scenario of individuals opting for private, solitary confinement was in the United States where the San Quentin in 1852 essentially paving the way for this relatively new practice (Hallett 12). After the turn of the 20th century, countries such as the United Kingdom, France, and Australia readily embraced this system while aping the American model. The privatization of prisons is one example of the can-do mentality that the American culture fosters. Private entities take on an arduous task that sees them perform a role that was hitherto conducted by the Federal Government, therefore, proving their managerial abilities (“This Is the Real Reason Private Prisons Should Be Outlawed”). The main argument provided by proponents of this model is that it aids the government in saving funds that can otherwise be used for other vital purposes. On the other hand, I believe that privatization of prisons is a step in the wrong direction for any society due to various controversial questions that these entities raise. In this essay, I will provide sufficient arguments to support my position above that the correctional service should not be privatized.

The right to direct punitive measures solely lies in the hands of the state. The government adheres to all tenets provided for in the constitution to ensure that there is harmony in the society while creating an ideal environment for development. It also has the power to use the Judiciary as an arm responsible for ensuring that the rule of law supersedes all other cultural conventions. As stewards of the law, the criminal justice system is expected to mete out its judgment as per the constitutional provisions and sentencing those found guilty of any violation. The general idea is to ensure that individuals realize that there will always be consequences for their actions and should still expect punishment from the state when they commit these offenses.  Incarceration in a federal prison is a symbolic act that displays the authority that a state has over its citizens and can use the Judiciary to deprive these individuals of some rights and freedoms. Handing inmates over to a private entity presents a relatively new scenario where these free facilities seem more in control than the government. As a result, it is quite likely that the prisoners will view the staff in a private prison in higher regard in comparison with the state. These individuals are essentially deprived of all the freedoms that they previously enjoyed when they lived free lives. The prison warders are in total control of all aspects of these individual’s lives, deciding when should eat, sleep, exercise and enjoy their leisure time. All the while, the federal government plays a peripheral role in only ensuring that the prisoner’s expenses are catered for during their stay there. Using private prisons, therefore, goes against the premise that the state has in punishing the offenders while also diminishing its influence on an individual’s reverence.

The presence of private prisons also poses fundamental ethical questions in the use of this business model. In reality, owners and stakeholders in these facilities are out to profit from an increase in the rate of incarceration.  Their primary motivation is the financial incentives that this model creates, leaving out the inmates who are the reason why they have the job in the first place. In the United States, agencies such as the GEO Group and the now infamous Corrections Corporation of America (CCA) are some of the leading players in this industry and have been known to advance laboriously on these programs (Price and Morris 76).  The amount of investment made particularly in hiring lobbyists to clamor for the mass incarceration of people, and a reduction in leniency merely is astonishing. These groups aim to push for the implementation of strict criminal justice policies that would see more people confined in these facilities. For such corporations, the econometrics of incarceration is simple; harsher criminal justice doctrines lead to an increase in the number of inmates, which ultimately increases their per capita income. It’s entirely unethical that such corporations make their profit from the suffering of others who might have taken a wrong turn in life. It is as though, they derive their joy from these individual committing offenses as they benefit from their folly. They have no empathy whatsoever for the families affected by these offenders and are therefore not committed to making sure that individuals don’t commit offenses. On the flipside there are moments during which the criminal justice system fails the public, leading to the wrongful conviction of such individuals. The primary concern for these institutions is the money they would possibly rake in without having any empathy for the families of all those innocent individuals that find themselves behind bars.

The privatization of prisons will also hurt integrity and principles across the board. In every situation, either good or bad there usually exists individuals who seek to make the most out of it and make gains. It’s quite likely that these corporations only serve their self-interest since we have already established that a financial incentive is the primary motivational factor in their establishment of private institutions. Cutting cost is usually one of the most comfortable means of making a decent profit in any enterprise. In the case of private prisons, the general practice involves cutting down on the number of officers and staff needed to run these institutions efficiently. Moreover, it is typical for the shareholders in these corporations to insist on a reduction in the number of training practices required to equip the officers with sufficient knowledge of how to engage inmates. One should not confuse these methods with frugality as it is apparent these corporations seek to seal any loopholes that might drain their profits. The result is often catastrophic. These organizations are hell-bent on establishing a thriving business that they completely forget that they may be placing their staff in mortal danger. A large population of inmates placed under an administration that is both small in size and poorly trained to defuse any potentially dangerous situation is a recipe for disaster. Riots are common in prisons, and with such an inferior officer to inmate ratio, it is quite likely that the odds would not be in their favor. Moreover, privatization of correctional services would also affect the integrity of the criminal justice system. Interested parties would make it their life’s work to use underhand methods to achieve their objectives. Legislators pushing for stiffer penalties may receive bribes to ensure that their bills become law and ultimately benefitting the corporations from these incarcerations. Similarly, corruption is likely to thrive given the fact that it is judges who have the final say in matters law. A more recent scandal involved the Mid-Atlantic Youth Service Corp which offers juvenile correctional facilities for delinquents (Price 87). The discovery made was that the firm paid judges to sentence as many children as possible to serve their stints in these facilities.

Another reason why private prisons should be phased out has to with the fact that they offer few opportunities that might transform the inmates. A prison facility is vital as it is expected to house offenders, help them come to terms with their offense and understand why they are in prison. It’s usually a long but worthwhile road that seeks to correct the demeanor of these individuals and get them on the right track. The process involves spending time and money counselors that often meet these individuals and assist in ensuring that they become self-aware and able to acknowledge their role in the mistakes they committed. By so doing, they reflect upon their lives and the path they should have taken, admitting that there can always be a second chance in life after prison. In spite of recognizing this need, private jails rarely offer these services and for obvious reasons. Specialists are an additional cost to these for-profit institutions that are usually trying their level best to cut down on expenses (Price and Morris 56). Additionally, a large number of persons housed in these systems are individuals with lower educational levels. They might have dropped out of school at various stages of life which explains why they are more prone to incarceration in comparison with their counterparts with higher levels of education. Researchers have proven time and again that providing inmates with an education program during their stint at the facility is beneficial as it significantly reduces recidivism rates. Its either private prisons are blind to this factor blatantly ignoring it even with full knowledge of its consequences. The latter is quite likely quite likely and mostly has to do with the economics underpinning mass incarceration. It’s easier for an educated individual to obtain gainful employment, therefore avoiding the mistakes that got them in prison.  Private prisons therefore intentionally deprive their inmates of educational programs to ensure that occupancy is always full in their institutions together with the assurance that multiple offenders will still be returning.

For-profit facilities have adverse effects on marginalized communities and are likely to alter family structures in the long run. The United States is known globally for having the highest number of its population in prisons. Even more surprising is the fact that a majority of those held in these facilities are people of color. African Americans, Hispanic Americans, and Latinos often fill federal centers all across the country. The primary reason why this is the case has to do with the fact that these individuals come from communities with poor conflict resolution mechanisms coupled with generational poverty (Price 67). Marginalization and unemployment lead to desperation with most of these individuals embracing illegal activities just to get by and support their families. Those apprehended by law enforcement officers often end up in private prisons due to the health policies found here. Older individuals are a perceived as a burden to healthcare and usually housed in federal facilities, which leaves persons of color, who are typically younger and healthier, in private prisons. Since people of color are more likely to be incarcerated in comparison with their white counterparts, private prisons and up teeming with them. With a high recidivism rate and the implementation of strict criminal justice policies, people of color often get trapped in the system leaving behind a generation of broken homes.

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Privatization of Prisons – Advantages And Disadvantages

Privatization of prisons

The emergence of private corporations operating and owning prisons at the beginning of the 20th Century becomes a controversial issue which faces factors favor of it in equal measures with its critiques. As argued by Sellers (2007), the complication in the “prison industrial complex” depicts the impacts of the privatization of prisons amidst globalization and the awesome growth of the prisons in all of the modern history.

Advantages of privatization of prisons

Privatization of prisons makes contributions to and buoys the general “culture” towards law enforcement and criminal justice. This is done through leveling our common sense understanding on the causes of social problems and the solution responses of violence, containment and force. Through the expansion of the criminal justice system beyond the capability of the state agencies, civil servants, the privatization of prison has made this culture grow in ways that are both practice-related and ideological (Green, 2010).

The advocates of private prisons view these privatization corporations as an asset to the criminal justice, in that, they relieve the public agencies of the burdens of operating prisons (Schmalleger&Smykla, 2015). Since the public courts and the law enforcement are their clients, the private orisons operators are held to be accountable for high standards within their facilities and operations.

Private sector efficiency-the privatization has shown efficient running of the prisons than the public agencies due to the profit motive prompts the corporations to downsize unnecessary expenses but clasp to tighter operating budgets.

Disadvantages of privatization of prisons

There are claims that the private prisons do not really save money, but just like any other for-profit business entity, they strive to maximize their own profits. As a result of this there is a reduction in the provision of essential services in the prisons- from the food, medical care and clothing to staff costs and security, at the endangerment of the inmates, staff and the general public.

A section of the critiques pay concern to the influence and power of the for-profit prisons. At the moment when much of the public discourse questions the war-on-drugs and the war-on-crimebeing fought as wars, the critics are claiming that profit incentive skews public discourse to be apart from the reasoned argument of the viable solutions to social problems (Logan, 2002, p. 173).

In addition the demographic analysis and the history of the today’s prisons make-up, for example the US prisons produce roughly 15% White, 35% Latino and 50% African-American, shows that the privatization of prisons has threatened to re-institute a link between race and commerce which has never been experienced since the 1800’s.

Within the public sector, money paid as tax make more of itself, that is, each public dollar paid into a social service will spend itself about four or eight times more elsewhere just within the public sector. Once the public money is taken into the hands of the private sector, that money stays there and is gone forever (Logan, 2002). This becomes particularly true when we consider that the privatization corporations mostly are given handsome tax incentives and breaks, basically called “corporate welfare,” meaning we are less likely to see that money again.

Summary

According to Sellers (2007), the necessity of prisons privatization became inevitable as the late 1960’s marked the expansion of the powers of law enforcement agencies around the globe, generating unprecedented reliance on the incarceration in treatment of the political, economic, social and mental health challenges.

The call on the new acts crimes and the increase in the severity of sentencing for other acts, there has a “prison boom.” Soon, the prison overcrowding exceeded prison construction budgets. The failure of government agencies to fully meet the overcrowding effect, private investor recognize the business opportunity thereby resulting to formation institution like the Correction Corporation of America (CCA)-with motive to venture capital in building new prisons, then leasing to state in a profit-making basis (Schmalleger&Smykla, 2015).

The resultant outcome of the privatization of prisons as a result of the Correctional Corporations having amassed greater political influence through lobbying of power and campaign contributions, government ties, while making an attempt of converting the discourse of justice into the language of marketplace. Moreover, the accusations on the government agencies exploiting monopoly powers on corrections, espouse the necessity to downscale and cut through the red tape.

Privatization of prisons has proved to a convincing level that the private sector can run the prisons cheaply and efficiently, conducting a more appealing job meanwhile saving the taxpayers money.

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Corrections Accreditation and Privatization

Write a 350- to 700-word paper in which you discuss corrections accreditation and privatization.

Address the following questions:

What is corrections accreditation? How does corrections accreditation affect the professional development of corrections officers? How can industry leaders plan for better correctional officer professionalization and accreditation?·

What is privatization as it relates to prisons? How does this affect state and federal prison systems? How well do privatized prisons meet correctional criteria and how do they compare to federal and state prisons?

Format your paper consistent with APA guidelines.

 

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