Essay on Building More And More Prisons The Best Solution?
The primary purpose of prison is to protect the community and rehabilitate the offender (Smart Justice, 2015). Research has indicated that prison fails to do this and instead can increase rate of reoffending (Smart Justice, 2015). Prison does not address the causes of the person’s criminal offending.
Imprisonment is designed to be a sentence of last resort, yet we are building more prisons at an ever increasing rate (Smart Justice, 2015). Prison is the most expensive response to criminal offending. In Victoria, annually, the prison system cost more than $1 billion (Millar, 2015). It cost more than $98, 000 to house a prisoner each year (SCRGSP, 2015).
It is important to discuss the key drivers of growth behind our prison population. While the rate of crime has not increased, our prison population has (Kilgore, 2015). Tougher on crime policies have been a contributing factor to the increase in prison population (Department of Justice, 2011). Prior to the abolishment of suspended sentences from the period 2009 to 2012, the Victorian prison population increased by 11% (Glass, 2014). The following period 2012-2014, it increased to 25% (Glass, 2014).
Abolishment of alternative sentences including intensive corrections orders (ICO), suspended sentences and home detention orders (HDO), have been a key driver of growth in the increased prison population (Kilgore, 2016). The parole reforms recommended…