Rehabilitation Vs. Punishment

Submitted By Imloved1
Words: 1361
Pages: 6

Maria D. Calderon
Professor Marlene Seidman
Critical Thinking-Section 23
December 5, 2014

Rehabilitation vs. Punishment There are so many issues that can be pointed out when the topic comes up about criminals, whether they should be punished or rehabilitated. The two have publicized what a great impact it could have on the offenders, the society and the financial impact on society. Many people argue that a person who commits a crime needs to be place in prison instead of being placed in a rehabilitation program, without the thought of wondering why a person committed the crime. In this paper I will reconnoiter the effects of punishment and rehabilitation and showing why rehabilitation will make a better deterrent. My paper will also show the impact that rehabilitation and punishment will have on the victims, their families and the crime rate. Research has proven to show how rehabilitation works better with helping the offenders transfer back into society. One of the main concerns related to punishment and rehabilitation is which one better deters crime more effectively? Over populated prisons have been one of the biggest concerns most government officials have discussed pertaining the prison system. There are 4 men to every 6 by 8 feet cell, and many who are non-violent offenders. “The largest segment of the county's jail population is made up of about 10,000 pretrial detainees. Not all of them could be safely released pending trial, because some are deemed violent or severely mentally ill and some are being held at the request of other jurisdictions. But about 1,000 could be safely released to free up space for other purposes” (Board, The. "A Fix for Jail Overcrowding." Los Angeles Times. Los Angeles Times, 5 Sept. 2013. Web. 29 Nov. 2014). With an urgency to find an inmate a bed, many prisoners are being moved all around the country. Rising the price that tax payers are having to pay just to move one person. Its places the offenders family in a bind, and making it difficult to see their family members. The large prison population is undermining any good work the prison system is trying to carry out, while trying to help rehabilitate the offenders who are serving a long prison sentence. Having people crammed in a small place and everyone all wanting the same things can turn ugly and fast. You have non-violent offenders having to become violent to survive in the prison itself, creating a bigger problem for themselves. When incarcerating an offender many judges are not thinking of the amount of money that is spent having to feed, clothe, house, provide health care and transportation for each inmate. It costs the state a minimum of $28,000 to $35,000 a year. With states such as New York, California, Texas and New Mexico that are having population problems, are having to spend more tax payer’s money to build more jails and prisons. The cost to run a rehabilitation center is roughly around $2,000 to $4,000 dollars which is 12 times less expensive than running a prison. “Jail is an expensive proposition, which is why you want to use it only when you have to use it” (Harshbarger, Rebecca. "Taxpayers Cost of Housing NYC Prisoner Last Year: $167,000 per Inmate." New York Post. 13 Aug. 2013. Web. 30 Nov. 2014). A lot of offenders are still sitting in jails waiting to get cases disposed, the wait time for each inmate has grown and in many cities the crime rate has begun to show progress by declining. Each and every inmate has had ample amount of time to gain some sense of self-control. They each had the opportunity to avail themselves of many helpful programs before they were ever incarcerated. Inmates made the decision to rob, steal, hurt people, use drugs, drop out of school and join gangs to commit multiple crimes. Just like the rest of the real world every person needs to learn to accept the consequences of their choices. All states offer tax supported programs to help their citizens. Programs such as academic or remedial