Sociology in corrections

The book A Critical Approach to Corrections from Michael Welch gives several reasons and chapters to choose from for the Social approach in Corrections. Important in this
chapter is to review the reasons why non violent and petty criminals are incarcerated more and more over the costs of the taxpayers. What is the reason behind this? According to Butterfield (2002b) and Langan and Leving (2002) heavy handed approach to crime control does not sufficiently contribute to public safety. The huge investment in the system drains the tax dollars from other important needs in the USA like social services health care and education. Therefore we must seek for another way for this system. A Critical Approach is needed to review the system of today to see where changes can be made in a way that those who need to be punished are punished but also not on the cost of the tax payers like it is right now. The system needs changes in order to keep it back in control. Jeffrey Reiman presents in his book The Rich get Richer and the Poor get Prison the task: "Imagine that instead of designing a correctional system to reduce and prevent crime, we had to design one that would maintain and encourage the existence of stable and visible "class" of criminals. What would it look like?" Reiman presents five basic features in his book. First that laws would exist that target victimless crimes like gambling, prostitution, use of drugs, these laws create that what people might think is normal is a crime


anti social feeling.
Third Reiman states, inmates are subjected to a prison experience that is not only
demeaning but also painful. The conditions are horrible most of the time, aggression
of other inmates and staff are excessive and unfair.
Fourth Reiman gives us that prisoners do not get help from the officials, are not
Trained in any marketable skill. Therefor it is difficult for ex-offenders to find a
job after prison due to discrimination by employers. Prison gives also a stigma.
As fifth reason Reiman gives us is the treatment ex-offenders get after prison which
Is far different from other "decent" citizen. Loosing the right to vote, and other
aspects of freedom are curtailed as well. They could be the victim of harassment.
Reiman and his students concluded after the study that the system from today
is designed to fail. Reiman says about it that the American criminal justice system
fails to combat adequately crime precisely because it is designed to fail.
The book reaches beyond the basic description and therefor gives a careful
analysis. The broader context of it is essential because it leads the tough decision
and questions about the entire policy behind it. For example the drug addict. What
should be done Treat them Incarcerate them Or both. The crime control policies
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are very complex about this issue. Just criminalizing drugs is one side of an
approach. An in-depth analyses of the problem could lead to a better understanding
of the social problem behind the addiction and its effect on corrections and crimes.
The sophisticated and analytic approach could encourage to a more
openmindedness with regard in how the policy of correction could also be designed
and implemented.