Analysis Of Scared Straight

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“Scared straight!” was a program design by the prisoners of Rahway State prison in New Jersey to aid prevent juveniles from continuing a life of crime that would lead them to eventually enter a prison system. The film shows the program in action with seventeen adolescents and follow up interviews with the juveniles and the inmates who ran the program, twenty years after the event. The “Scared Straight” program depicted a high success rate, but it did not take into account outside factors.

Scared Straight interviews twenty years after the juveniles visited Rahway State Prison, showed that only one of the juveniles, Qaadir, ended up in a maximum security prison as an adult. Giving the program a success rate of about ninety-four percent. Basing
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Frank spend five years in prison, while Ken was sentence to jail numerous time and died of an aids related illness at the age of 33. Feinstein (2005) argues that the program is effective for those that do not needed, but is ineffective for those who have already spend time in juvenile correctional facilities. Pretrosino, Turpin-Petrosino and Buehler (2003) believe that the scared straight and other similar programs are not effective individually, but should be pair with other crime prevention strategies. One of the new programs in Rahway State Prison, is one-on-one follow-up counseling, which have shown great results. Feinstein (2005) suggest that there needs to be more research to “help define a population that would benefit from the program” (pg. 44), this makes the most sense since the film and interviews with the juveniles demonstrates that it did help some of them and continues to do so twenty years after, Sheri Bouldin, a probation officer, noted that out of the three hundred and eighty four juveniles she has taken into the program only fifty-seven are still participating in criminal activities. As well Sandy Shevack, a social worker, mentions that out of about three hundred children he has taken to the prison, eighty percent have turn their life …show more content…
Seven of the inmates were released on parole and only one of them got their parole removed. Two of the inmates, Joe and Dominic passed away, Joe died of a drug overdose after four months out on parole, and Dominic died three years after been released of an aids related illness. Four out of the seven, became success stories, they all had jobs once again and were living in the straight and narrow path. In the nine studies that Petrosino, Turpin-Petrosino and Buehler (2003) investigated, they noted the positivity and enthusiasm this programs provided for the inmates. In that case, the scared straight program has not showed positive empirical data according to Petrosino, Turpin-Petrosino, and Buehler (2003), but it has help inmates. Therefore, if the continuation of the program in not really helping the juveniles, but is also not harming them, then the program should continue to help the inmates. As previously mention, there was one inmate that after being out in parole ended up in prison again. Malik, was not able to stay out of prison, his two sons ended up in prison as well, therefore there was definitely outside factors that contributed for all three gentleman to end up in prison.

One argument that can be made about the benefits of the scared straight program is that it is demonstrating the consequences of their acts to the juveniles. According to the American

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