Prisons in America #5

Fundamental Differences between Jails and Prisons

Jails are city/county facilities that are used to house the pretrial defendants who are not able to make bails, the short-term lawbreaking offenders, the misdemeanant offenders and the offenders waiting to be transferred to the state prisons. By contrast, prisons are state/federal facilities for keeping accommodating the long-term offenders who have been sentenced by a court of law.  Additionally, jails accommodate few offenders as most of them wait for their fate to be decided while prisons accommodate the large population of the offenders who have subjected to long sentence periods. For example, in the United States, the jails accommodated at most 100 offenders a day while the prisons accommodated over a million offenders in 2000. The prison administrations have access to lawyers who operate for their departments or the attorney general’s office. Jails have the wardens who control the populations held in them. They only release and receive the offenders temporarily before the courts make the verdict of their accusations.

Issues Caused By the Ageing of Confined Defenders

The increased length if the sentence is the root cause of the aging of the defenders. The elderly offenders have however faced challenges such as developing health problems and sudden deaths while in prison. Indeed, it is not the will of the judicial system to subject the offenders to the lengthy sentence period but is obedience to the rule of law, where each crime is associated with its sentence. To address the problem, the judicial systems in the United States tend to favor the elderly offenders than the young defenders irrespective of the crime committed. Such is based on the fact that the older offenders have more chronic health problems than the young counterparts and should be subjected to a lesser sentence. Indeed the criminal justice systems as well offer the sentence breaks to the older offenders and keep sentencing the young criminals.


Why Offenders Have Difficulty Reintegrating Into the Society

The offenders experience several social, personal and economic challenges during their reintegration to the home communities after being granted their freedom. The offenders result due to their past experiences and the consequence of incarceration. Some of the offenders have a history of segregation and marginalization. The offenders do not quickly get job opportunities as the community members still doubt their accountability and transparency. For one, the offenders struck by the loss of properties losing hope and developing stress.

Similarly, most of the offenders lose their principles of personal relationships and can seldom develop the ability to keep housing for themselves and their families. Most of them experience mental challenges while in prison and tentatively lose their social networks due to self-defeating habits and aptitudes.  For the homeless prisoners, their reentry into the society is associated with some cost to the community in terms of finances and public safety.

Recommendations Made to Help the Released Inmates to Cope in Their Societies

During the release of the prisoners, prisoners should be assigned mentors especially family who support advice make friends and even offering practical assistance. The communities are advised to support ex-prisoners after their transitions. The support entails encouraging the family members to help the offenders acquire trust and faith in the communities. There are also proposals to make amends to resolute the harms that had earlier been caused by the ex-offenders. There are enlisted facilitators engaged in chairing the restorative conferences with the victims and discussing how to amend and rebuild rapport with the community members. Additionally, conducting an inventory to identify personal strengths like education and skills helps to keep on track the family rapport and social networks. Such aids to develop realistic plans for the re-entry of the ex-prisoners to their communities.