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Ethical Dilemmas In Criminal Justice
Ethical dilemmas permeate almost all organizations globally. Members of an organization often find themselves in challenging situations that require the adoption of the most effective solution that meet the needs of the conflicting parties or situations. One of the organizations that often face the challenge of ethical dilemmas is the criminal justice organization. The criminal justice organizations have been known to perform activities that ensure safety of the population. Most of the ethical dilemmas focus on decisions that organizations can adopt with the aim of fostering the safety of the victims, convict, and the society. Significant evidence shows that ethics play a significant role in an organization. It ensures the recognition of the rights and freedom of the individual alongside prioritizing the safety of individuals in the society (Roberson & Mire, 2010).
Therefore, this research paper analyzes different ethical issues that face the criminal justice organizations. It bases its analysis on different case studies with different conditions to examine the ways that ethical dilemmas affect the functioning and decision-making among criminal justice personnel. In specific, the analysis describes the ethical and/or moral question in each of the cases alongside describing the motivation behind the action and the potential consequences of adopting an option. In addition, it provides analysis of the decisions the actors in the case study should adopt to ensure equity for those involved in the process alongside the ethical basis for the decision adopted for each of the case. The analysis utilizes the use of a wide array of research materials to illuminate the light into the ethical dilemmas that face the criminal justice organizations.
The Parole Board
The case presented shows that Robert the prison warden faces the challenge of making decisions on the best applicable method of reducing overcrowding in the prisons of the state. The overcrowding has raised concerns among the legal advocates who are threatening to push for the correction of the legal system to ease the present overcrowding. The overcrowding in the prisons raises the moral or ethical question of the health implications of overcrowding to the prisoners. In addition, the overcrowding raises the moral question among the legal systems on the actions adopted to curb the increasing population of the prisoners. The chair of the prison board is in the dilemma of making decisions that favor either the advocates or the prison agency. In specific, the chair can either broaden the eligibility of parole to increase the number of inmates released to the community for community-based supervision. However, the chair faces the challenge of the possibility of the released prisoners becoming more offensive after their release for community supervision. As such, this shows that the chair of the prisons has the ethical challenge of making sound decisions that would see a reduction in the present overcrowding in the prisons of the state. The overcrowding raises the moral question relating to the effects of the overcrowding to the prisoners. In addition, it raises the moral question of the effectiveness of broadening the eligibility of parole (Roberson & Mire, 2010).
The case shows different factors acting as driving forces towards the adoption of the conflicting options to reduce the overcrowding in the prisons. One of the key motivation for the need for the adoption of strategies to reduce the over population in the prisons is overcrowding in the federal prisons. The overcrowding has caused the ethical dilemma of broadening the parole system allowing many inmates to be released to the community prematurely. Adopting the decision to broaden the parole system has positive and negative effects to the prisons departments and society as a whole. Broadening the parole eligibility will increase the number of inmates released for the community supervision; hence, reducing overcrowding and avoiding the Federal suits. On the other hand, it is highly expected that the released inmates will be aggressive in the society with massive violation of the legal regulations. As such, this will increase the number of inmates arrested due to the violation of the Federal law; hence, increasing the number of inmates in the prisons further (Hudson, 2003).
I believe the actor should consider increasing the accommodation available for the inmates rather than broadening the eligibility of the parole criteria. However, achieving this cannot be achieved within a short time. As such, other strategies should be embraced to reduce the overcrowding witnessed in the prisons of this state. Among the short-term actions adoptable by the criminal justice agency is considering transferring the excess inmates to the neighboring federal prisons to ease the overcrowding in the prisons. The success of the process will entail adopting collaborative strategies between the involved stakeholders, including the legal representatives and the government agencies to ensure transparency. In addition, establishing additional structures to increase the accommodation of the federal prisons will entail lobbying for financial support from the government of the state. Despite its long-term nature, the option will reduce the current and future occurrence of overcrowding in the prisons of the state. Increasing accommodation also encompasses releasing the inmates who have served in the prisons for a long time and have shown a change in their behaviors over time.
Adopting the above decision will have a number of benefits to the prisons department and the society. First, increasing the accommodation available in the prisons will reduce the current and future incidences of overcrowding of the prisoners. It will reduce future incidences of legal suits against the prisons department. In addition, considering increasing the accommodation of the prisons will reduce the likelihood of the changing of the eligibility of the parole system within the state. As such, the inmates under community surveillance will not engage in activities that violate the federal laws; hence, the maintenance of the harmony of the society. The criminal justice agencies are dedicated to ensuring safety and justice in the society. Therefore, increasing the accommodation within the state's prisons will ensure social justice and safety through the reduction in acts that translate to violation of the Federal laws. Like other organizations, the criminal justice organizations that include the prisons should uphold their public trust. Upholding the public trust entails ensuring that the agency safeguards the interests of the population and the provision of conditions that does not violate the rights and freedom of the inmates.
The case focuses on William the warden who is faced with numerous challenges, including inadequate staffing, increasing population of the inmates, insecurity to the inmates and the officers, and inadequate funding from the responsible agencies. The increasing population of the inmates in the prison raises the ethical question concerning its health implications to the inmates and the officers working in a correctional facility. The lack of congruence in the number of the officers to the inmate population raises the risks of the officers being threatened by the inmates. The consequences officers' absenteeism of the, resigning, demotivation and low job satisfaction is likely to affect the management of operations within the facility. The lack of screening and risk assessment facilities for the inmates released for the community surveillance programs raises the questions concerning the dedication of the correctional facility to ensuring the safety of the members of the society (Hudson, 2003).
It is more likely that the lack of risk assessment and proper screening in the correctional facility will increase the likelihood of the release of inmates considered a threat to society. The release of inmates at risk of violating the federal laws and other people's rights because of inadequate screening and risk assessment violates the ethical commitment in the correctional facility. One of the key ways that William must present to the union representatives relates to providing training opportunities for enhancing their skills, knowledge, and competencies in security management. Training empowers them to embrace appropriate behaviors that aim at reducing incidences of insecurity within the facility. In addition, training encompasses equipping them with the essential knowledge and skills on risk assessment and screening of the inmates released into the community for surveillance programs. Such interventions will contribute to the release of appropriate inmates to the community surveillance program and reduce the incidences of violation of the state's laws by the inmates. Training also enhances their personal and professional growth (Roberson & Mire, 2010).
In addition, William can ensure the safety of the wardens by increasing the staff-inmate ratio. Increasing the staff-inmate ratio provides enhanced security as it reduces the risks of their threatening from the inmates alongside promoting the reinforcement of the stated policies that ensure their safety. However, the success of the process relies on the recruitment of additional officers that are only achievable with increasing funds provided to the correctional facility. William needs to recruit officers who are qualified (security and disaster management) to allow the incorporation of the desired practices to the present team. The safety of the team members not only encompasses physical safety, but also their psychological well-being. The present environment predisposes the wardens to psychological trauma due to the stressors present in…[continue]
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