Prison Models Essay

846 Words Mar 8th, 2013 4 Pages
Prison Models

There are three models of prisons that have been prominent in American since the early 1940’s: custodial, rehabilitative, and reintegration. Each model is designed differently based on its overriding goal, and this affects the physical design, policies, and programs that are implemented within each of the models.

Custodial Model

Purpose: Control, focus is on maintaining security and order.

Goal: Punishment, this is the best way to provide deterrence against future crime.

Focus: Prisoners must be punished for their wrongdoings and prison life must be made so unpleasant so that offenders will hesitate to commit any new crimes upon release.

Theory: Classical, belief that humans operate under
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Theory: Positivism, belief that crime is caused or determined by psychological factors or biological deficiencies and these can be diagnosed and treated by scientific means; idea that an offenders actions are out of their control.

Design: Courtyard, this allows prisoners to have as much “fresh air” as possible which is known to have many medical and psychological benefits.

Management Style: Hospital, prison staff has more professional training, and prisoners are treated as patients. Use benevolent authority to constructively change inmates from violent antisocial criminals to good citizens. There is a clear and orderly chain of command, but inmates are encourages to be involved in their care. Inmates are not involved in any decision making processes, and have no forms of self-governing.

Administrative Style: Consensual model, less restrictive correctional environment. Communication is both formal and informal. Situations dealing with inmates needs are formal while day to day interactions with inmates are less formal. Open communication is encouraged. The inmates are allowed to question their treatment options but the prison staff and administration has the authority to make all of the decisions.

Advantages: Lower recidivism rates, more humane, prisoners can get help may not have otherwise been able to get.

Disadvantages: More expensive, easier for escapes, treatment can

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