Ever since there has been crime, there have been prisons. It is a part of our society that we do not like to talk about very much, but it nonetheless is worthy of serious discussion. The government spends a great percentage of its budget on the housing of prisoners, so it is important to make sure that the system is working. It is designed to help rehabilitate individuals who have committed a crime, enabling them to pay for what they have done, while hopefully completing their sentence ready to become productive members of society once again. To do that, many would argue that prisoners need to be treated much more ethically and humanely than they are today.
Making Prisons More Ethical
If prisons are to become the correctional facilities that they were intended to be, then inmates need to be treated ethically. Individuals are housed in a prison to pay for their crimes. As long as they are willing to do that, then they should be allowed the opportunity to do their time and get ready to return to society in the end. This means that they should be afforded access to education, vocational training, and more to help them turn back to a life free of crime. Family and friends can help with this when they send cash to an inmate in federal prison. This is a way to provide them with the funds that they need to buy personal items that will help make their time in prison go a bit more smoothly.
Creating Prisons Free of Violence
It is also important that prisons be as free of violent behavior as possible. Individuals should feel safe when required to serve time in prison. When faced with violent situations, some people might be forced into living that type of lifestyle as well. This is not only dangerous for the prisoner, but for society as well. Prisons need to be a place of rehabilitation, not violence. We need to do better in our efforts to foster such an environment for the benefit of everyone involved.
Make Prisons Safer For Those Convicted of Lesser Crimes
Individuals who commit a petty crime are often required to serve out a prison sentence. We need to be sure that they are housed in a facility that keeps them safe. It is not ethical to subject them to a life that they are not familiar with. This is will simply serve to discourage them and could end up turning them towards a life of more serious crime in the future.
These are just three of the many issues that we should be talking about as a society. Few would argue that prisons are no longer necessary. In fact, there needs to be a mechanism by which justice is handed down to people who choose to break the law. At the same time, living in a humane society means that we treat prisoners with respect and dignity as well. Once that delicate line is finally reached, prisons will likely be as effective and efficient as they are intended to be.