The Swedish Prison System

1853 Words 8 Pages
The United States, known for its punitive approach to attacking crime, has the highest incarceration rate in the world, with an incarceration rate five times higher than the world average. Sweden, known for its progressive approach to incarceration, has a declining prison population with prisons and jails closing around the country. While this is just one of many factors to explain the huge discrepancy, the way that states treat individuals once they are in the prison system have a huge impact on a particular individual will reoffend. Many Swedish believe that the role of prison is not to punish, but to assist and to help the offender. This means that rehabilitation is at the heart of the approach of the Swedish prison model. While …show more content…
If an inmate would like to receive more education, they can study anything from compulsory lower level education to university courses. The reason that university courses are offered in the Swedish prison system is that almost anywhere in the world this rings true: the more educated a person is the less likely they are to offend or reoffend. In addition, the idea to have and keep university classes in the prison system was not an idea from a politician, it is from a group of highly educated criminologists. These groups of criminologists are the ones who help make policy with the Ministry of Justice, people who actually study this for a living and know what works and what does not work, as opposed to a politician who is most likely pandering to a corporation that helps with their campaign financing or trying to look tough on crime to the people that they …show more content…
This usually does not happen, but in rare cases it is used, but not nearly to the extent in the United States. If an inmate does escape, it is not a criminal offense. An inmate, who believed he was not receiving proper medical attention when he had a toothache, escaped and went to go see the dentist, and after getting treated called the prison so he could get a ride back. The dentist trip only cost him an extra day in prison. In other countries in Scandinavia, it is not a criminal offense to escape, but you must return your prison clothes if you escape, so many people mail their prison clothes back to the institution upon escape. If they are caught they usually just finish their rest of their sentence with no additional years tacked

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