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Prison Inmates Should Be Paroled Early to Help Control the State's Budget Problems
This paper argues that inmates at State prisons should be having premature releases from prisons so that the States can manage their budget problems. As the paper illustrates, despite criticisms on parole that it introduces unreformed culprits back in the society and that the program is unorganized, parole is a major contributor in reducing prison populations, which directly translates to reduced State expenditures (Licari, 2009). All the implementation of parole releases has either direct or indirect economic effect to the States as well as the prisoner and society as a whole. Reformed individuals are able to earn their income thus independent of the government (Sons, n.d.). In addition, as there is professional structure of parole, they lead to faster reforming and procedures that reduce caseloads enabling parole officers to spend more time with the high-risk individuals (National Research Council (U.S.) et al., 2008, p. 81). However, critics exist on parole as shifting of responsibility from judges to parole officers can render the process deterrent. Nevertheless, the acceptance or denial of parole show base on the majority benefits without unnecessary influences. State prison inmates should thus; be paroled early to help control the state's budget problems.
State Prison Inmates Should be Paroled Early to Help Control the State's Budget Problems
The recent global recession has brought light to a problem that existed long before, although not to the severity that it does right now. Many states in the United States are facing massive budget shortfalls. In response to these budget problems, many states are coming up with ideas to help with the problem. One of these solutions has many pros and cons to them; however, the pros significantly outweigh the cons. State prison inmates should be paroled early to help control the state's budget problems.
It is the probable perspective of majority state officials concerned with prison reforms and the public generally as well as the government benefits that the issue of parole has a common purpose that inclines to introducing the measure. Despite for the better part of the history of parole, the minority who disagree with this proposition on the basis of the dangers imposed by introducing incomplete reformed lawbreakers in the society, and that the procedure in unorganized program without beneficial effects to all stakeholders, the professionals who interact with the prisoners on daily basis cannot be wrong. As the experts who include psychologists, social workers, and teachers have a firsthand interaction with these prisoners, they well understand the optimal procedures that can help reduce state expenditure on prisoners (Licari, 2009). As the intended benefits should be to the majority, consideration should also be on particular locations to examine whether it benefits only the parolees, the society, the government or integrated benefits to all. Nevertheless, practical parole procedures have seen an integrated benefit to all stakeholders (Licari, 2009). While the parole programs cannot be 100% in reforming as Goodman acknowledges in DRCNet Foundation (2003), and as legislators might fail to consider closely radical ideas based on individual freedom, there is evidence across America that her States are looking for measures to reduce their swelling budgets. While steps like reducing prison programs or even needed facilities can significantly lower expenditure, parole remains a significant measure to lower costs as it reduces the prison population. With this consideration, State authorities have found themselves amending their stiffer laws that concern drug and nonviolent crimes. For example, Kentucky have seen the release of hundreds of prisoners prematurely while Texas has considered reducing recidivism violators as Oklahoma, Alabama, and South Carolina have recommendations and plots to amend laws so as to reduce prison numbers. Washington on its own have passed the Senate Bill 5990 to consider offers for early releases as this will enable the State save up to 34 million dollars annually where over 900 current convicts will be set free (DRCNet Foundation, 2003). Considering parole as an early release from prison where the victim is subject to continuous monitoring coupled by adherence to set terms and conditions that last for a given set of time, the consideration to put individuals on the program should consider the convicts who have improved records in rehabilitation in their prison term. The implementation of parole releases translates to either direct or indirect effect to the States' budget that has benefits to the prisoner, the community/society, and the state as a whole. It touches the behavioral character of the prisoner and the economic aspect of the state.
State prison inmates should be paroled early to help control the state's budget problems
Concentrating on the behavioral aspect of the victim, a well-reformed individual has economic benefit to the society and the State as a whole. For instance, when a prisoner is on parole, this individual goes to the streets that enable him/her to have a chance to earn his/her income. This situation illustrates clearly that this individual (parolee) does not depend on the government anymore and thus the government is able to save and use money that otherwise could be for managing prisoners, to other more productive projects. This shows how the economy of a state benefits from parole (Sons, n.d.). With the surging problems with economic consequences, it is apparent that majority of state prisons have resulted to minimizing the populations in the prisons as a key way to saving money. For example, Illinois forms a latest good example where approximately a thousand minor offenders will enjoy the benefit of ending their sentences prematurely in prison and completing them at either their homes or other recommended rehabilitation or correctional areas. With the help of professional advice, State prisons can identify the so classified low-risk criminals who show improved behavioral character. These will exclude the violent criminals such as sex crimes and violent offences that have a significant crime history spanning over a decade. As statistics indicate that for example in Illinois, it costs an average of 23, 394 dollars to maintain a single prisoner annually, which translates to about 1.43 billion dollars total corrections budget as there is a 33% additional population in the prison, reducing numbers in prisons is the key to reducing costs (Corley, 2009). In addition, and similar to majority of other States, Illinois State prison population has exploded due to offences that associate with minor related to drugs, the past has seen the population double in the past three decades to approximately 45,000 in prisons, where apart from this number, 30,000 are undertaking parole. The two groups combined have management costs that cost Illinois over a billion dollars taxpayers money annually (Corley, 2009). According to the assistant corrections director of Illinois, Mr. Benos, the prospects are that the State will be able to save up to 5 million dollars by releasing some convicts early as confining prisoners behind bars might seem protecting the public from hardcore criminals but it translates to them paying significantly for prisoners maintenance (Iannacci, & Morris, 1999, p. 96). Therefore, there should be efforts to reform prisoners so that they get on parole to save State funds.
Because there is professional designing of successful parole programs to reform and correct the prisoners, it has higher chances of not only reducing recidivism but also encouraging faster reforming hence economic gains for the State. As the programs bring back the prisoners to the society, they are in a better position to learn to behave in the acceptable ways of the society and thus these individuals are able to live in harmony with the community engaging in positive economic activities that make them independent to the government, hence saving. This transforms to both the individual and the society benefits generally (Sons, n.d.). In addition, parole programs give the chance of an individual to prepare for the societies mistrust and whenever prisoners have the opportunity to be on parole, it motivates them, because prisoners see the advantage of faster reforming to join paroles that will lead to their final release. They have the urge to behave well and follow the set prison rules, which ends up transforming them in the end, becoming worthy individual in the society. Because they understand that being on parole will see them free, it creates a significant incentive to avoid crime and undertake trainings and educational programs hence this individual ends up being beneficial to the victim as well as the society, an asset rather than a liability. Since they become independent, no worry of the state to budget for them hence save to other beneficial project (Sons, n.d.). In addition, parole in properly organized institutions gives convicts the appropriate support to reform under monitoring where they have electronic monitoring devices fixed on them. This shows the effect of technology in easing traffics in prisons (National Research Council (U.S.) et al., 2008, p. 81). As Benos indicates that considering cumulative consequences, "it is better for public safety in the long-term, it's better for the safety of our facilities, and it's…[continue]
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