The problem with prisons is that they are focused on punishing prisoners and not getting them ready to be a member of society again.
Solitary confinement is wrong. For 23 hours a day, prisoners are locked in a bathroom sized cell. They are supposed to go outside for one hour everyday. Some guards lie to the prisoners so they do not have to bring the prisoners outside. Prisoners sent to solitary confinement will go for at least 15 days, some prisoners have spent years in solitary confinement.
Treating the prisoners like humans, removing solitary confinement would also be a step in the right direction. We need to remember that prisoners are still human beings even though they have committed crimes. Instead of focusing on punishment, we should focus on rehabilitating prisoners to be able become a contributing member of society once again.
“It has been proven time and time again that education programs in prison help to give inmates a second chance. In fact, inmates who participated in educational programs were 43% less likely to commit a crime and return to incarceration within three years than those who did not.” Job training is also a solution to solving our prisoner problem.“The benefits of prison work programs go much deeper than just job training”. For a person newly re-entering society, the self-esteem and fulfillment that can come from working hard plays a big role in lessening criminal behavior. Prisoners who have job training are less likely to reoffend. “For a person newly re-entering society, the self-esteem and fulfillment that can come from working hard plays a big role in lessening criminal behavior.”
“This, among other data, prompted President Obama to institute The Second Chance Pell Pilot which will open up the opportunity for about 12,000 inmates to apply for Pell grants for the first time in nearly 24 years.”
The Legislative Analyst’s Office of California, one of my sources, uses evidence-based rehabilitation programs across the country, and believes this will help prisoners not return to prison.
Government and prison officials should change the way they handle prisoners within the prison system because they are still humans even though they committed crimes. One way to start is to get rid of private prisons, start more rehabilitation centers and get rid of solitary confinement.