Alternatives to Prison
Prison Alternatives: Drug Treatment Programs
There are common sense alternatives to prison for many inmates who are now incarcerated in the United States. The United States has more prisons and inmates than any other country. Twenty five percent of the world’s prison population resides in the United States. Our country has the highest incarceration rate in the world – five times the average. In 1972, there were only 200,000 inmates.
In 2011, according to the United States bureau of Justice Statistics, there were 2,266,800 adults incarcerated in federal prisons, state prisons, and county jails. This staggering number does not include incarcerated juveniles. We should not and cannot accept that our country has more criminals than any other country. Numerous factors have contributed to these terrible statistics. A primary reason for the huge numbers lies with our rush to lock up any who violate the law. It is recognized that certain individuals should be incarcerated because of horrific crimes. On the other hand, there are individuals who should not be locked up because of their drug addictions and nonviolent crimes. We are starting to recognize that many individuals, who are addicted, would break their addiction-crime cycle by participating in an effective drug treatment program instead of years incarcerated. Ironically, reports have shown that drugs are easily available in numerous prisons and jails throughout the United States. Prisonpath posted last year in , “Governor Chris Christie, New Jersey, and Prisons” that Gov. Chris Christie has advocated and implemented mandatory drug treatment programs instead of jail sentences for nonviolent offenders. By pursuing this common sense approach, we are providing alternatives to overcrowded prisons.
I agree! two great alternatives are: community services and house arrest.
By Thami–In South African Correctional Service There are Prison where are 120 Inmates in the cell the place allowed only 38 as maximum for accommodation .Others sleeping on the floor and corridors
I am an experienced sentencing mitigation consultant who knows how to use alternatives and propose them in a manner that gets the Judge’s attention. Ask your lawyer if he prepares a sentencing report or if he relies on the states PSI. As a former convict turned prosecutor then defense lawyer I can tell you that you will not get what you do not ask for. And you would be surprised what you can get if you are prepared and put a well written and supported alternative sentencing proposal together.
By Brian–I am an experienced sentencing mitigation consultant who knows how to use alternatives and propose them in a manner that gets the Judge’s attention. Ask your lawyer if he prepares a sentencing report or if he relies on the states PSI. As a former convict turned prosecutor then defense lawyer I can tell you that you will not get what you do not ask for. And, you would be surprised what you can get if you are prepared and put a well written and supported alternative sentencing proposal together. This is especially true now with budget issues affecting every… Read more »
whats the name of the mitigation firm you work for, i happen to know a good friend who gave another friend of ours a ride who didnt have a valid license, not knowing he was picking up drugs, they were arrested and now he’s facing federal charges.
We do not work for any law firm. Where did the arrest occur–what state?
By Willie–I agree there are alternatives to incarceration because many suffers from some form of addition or other mental illness and the jails are not equipped to handle such prisoners. I agree that treatment would be a better fit than incarceration, but the US feels that incarceration is the solution where there is no chance of rehabilitation. Prisons are a money-making industry.
By Brent–The United States is also one most lenient in the world as far as crime and punishment.
while the United States puts people in prison a lot of other countries put people to death
for lesser offenses.In SAUDIA they will cut your hand off for theft.
By Willie–Is Saudia’s method a deterrent?
By Alan–I am really very naïve re: incarceration, so please bear with me. I have to ask what leads a person to commit a crime that results in prison? Is it addiction, poverty, anger management, mental illness, or what? Do we want to punish them or help them correct the cause of their criminal behavior? If they are not a threat to society, why incarcerate them? Would they not be better in support circles that keep them in check and coach them to modify their behavior. I don’t believe most people in the prison systems are bad people, just people… Read more »
In so many ways, incarceration has bmeoce big business for private enterprises and there is profit to be made in supporting every more severe punishments. It astounds me that a nation claiming to be predominantly Christian finds it so easy to try and punish children as adults, when Christians and Jews alike, through their respective rituals of Confirmation and Bar/Bat Mizvahs, believe that only at around age 13 do children bmeoce truly responsible for their actions and are expected to anticipate consequences. It feels as if we are reverting to the dark ages in terms of response to crime and… Read more »
By Brent–Willie,I think if people would think twice about committing a crime,if they were truly scared of the consequence.
By Willie–Brent; I agree to a point. Some of these criminals doesn’t fear consequences or fail to realize that there are consequences to the decision the make. I know I would be more afraid of the consequences of my deviant acts so prison is a deterrent for me.
By Kathy–I don’t believe we are the most lenient country as far as our incarceration system. While we do not directly maim people as in Saudi, we do have a tendency to have the attitude of just locking people away and forgetting about them when we promote or ignore the the very circumstances that got them there. I see the promotion of premarital sex in the media with the consequences of teen pregnancies which adds to the cycle of poverty and the culture of immediate gratification. No one listens to what we in education see and suggest. They just blame… Read more »
By Kathy–BTW, people ask us all the time “What do they (prison residents) look like?” Our answer is: “Look in the mirror.” For very often, there but for the grace of God… Often the only difference between a street person and an incarcerated offender is that one of us was caught.
By Willie–Thoughtful comments, which I agree with. We are all God’s creation and are linked through His Spirit. We are never to look down on another person unless we are going to pick them up. I pray God’s blessings upon the volunteers and workers at Kairos Prison ministry.
By Kathy–Thank you, Bradly. That article is spot on!