Effects of Imprisonment



  • Police caution

  • Monetary fines

  • Direct compensation to victim or community

  • Service to community

  • Suspended prison sentences

  • Prison sentences

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Restorative Justice

  • Making right what has been done wrong to the victim

  • Encouraging the offender to reflect upon harmful behaviours and accept the responsibility of committing the crime

  • Methods of reconciliation and mediation

  • Sometimes the process operates at the same time as the CJS

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UK Prison System 16th, 17th and 18th Century

  • Prison was where those awaiting trial and punishment stayed

  • Men, women, children were imprisoned together, no matter what crime was committed

  • Lived in very poor conditions, including malnutrition, poor hygiene, disease and maltreatment  

  • Bloody Code era (due to sharply increased number of people given the death penalty, even for crimes considered minor by today's society)

  • Transportation to British Colonies

  • Hard labour

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Reform to UK Prison System after 18th Century

  • John Howard

  • Howard League of Penal Reform

  • Insisted on reforms such as…

  • Paid staff

  • Outside inspection

  • Men and women being separated

  •  Proper diet and food

  • Any other necessities for a healthy living

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UK Prison System 19th and 20th Century

  • Imprisonment replaced capital punishment for serious offences

  • Prison Act 1898 abolished hard labour, stated that labour should be productive not harmful to health

  • Young people placed in separate establishments

  • 1933 first open prison built

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Prison Population in England and Wales

  • 71% sentenced adult males

  • 4% sentenced females

  • 1% sentenced males aged 15-17

  • 7% sentenced male aged 18-20

  • 5% convicted without sentence

  • 11% untried

  • 1% non-criminal

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During and After Prison

  • Induction and assessment

  • Rehabilitation programmes

  • Education

  • Work

  • Resettlement

  • Recidivism rates UK 29.8% in April 2017 – June 2017 according to the National Office for Statistics

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Overcrowding in Prisons

  • September 2011 showed 85 establishments were overcrowded

  • 26 prisoners murdered, 11 by a cellmate 1990-2001

  • Anecdotal evidences suggests prison overcrowding can lead to an increase in reoffending

  • Crowding can produce psychological and physiological stress

  • 115,000 offences committed in a prison 1996

  • 7000 self-harm incidents

  • In 2010 there were 58 self-inflicted deaths, compared to in 2003 there were 94

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Suicide in Prison

  • More common in prison

  • Offenders entering prison have a heightened risk of attempting suicide

  • UK the average suicide rate is 2 per week (approx.)

  • US prison suicide is four times more likely than in the community

  • Deaths due to suicide are significantly higher in prison

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Homicide in Prison

  • Murder is rare within prisons in the UK

  • Since 2005 there have been only 16 homicides  in prison, compared to the USA which is approximately 10 times the amount

  • Deaths due to homicide or illness are significantly lower in prison

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Towl 1996

  • Introduced strategies to aid the problem of prison suicides

  • Reduce the amount of remand prisoners as well as those with mental illness

  • Attempt to avoid negative consequences for those who report suicidal thoughts

  • Enable and encourage staff to identify and assist prisoners with suicidal feelings

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Bukstel and Kilman 1980

  • Reviewed 90 experimental studies

  • Found methodological flaws

  • Crowding, phase of sentence and peer groups all had an impact on the personal functioning

  • Deterioration results from poor adaptation to surroundings

  • Benign, passive and dependant personalities often adjust well

  • Indeterminant sentencing leads to adjustment issues

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