Reforming the Criminal Justice System Persuasive Essay by scribbler

Reforming the Criminal Justice System
An argument calling for a change from the high incarceration policy to a more practical, effective and reformative criminal justice system.
# 152866 | 1,450 words | 11 sources | APA | 2013 | US
Published on Apr 30, 2013 in Criminology (Criminal Justice and Corrections)

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The paper addresses the current penal policy of high imprisonment rates and discusses how it has led to a swelling prison population and exorbitant costs, while failing to discourage repeat offenses. The paper argues that mandatory incarceration for minor drug related offenses have to be replaced by more efficient, cost effective and reformative community based rehabilitation and de-addiction programs. Furthermore, the paper argues that even for other minor non-violent offenses, non-custodial sentences centered on community based correction programs should be preferred over incarceration.

High Incarceration (Does it Work?)
Imprisonment: Effects on Recidivism
Incarceration and Prison Overcrowding
Drug Offenses (Providing Community based Programs)

From the Paper:

"The US Criminal justice system has been subjected to severe criticism with doubts on its effectiveness in controlling crime. One of the important issues that confronts lawmakers is the very high incarceration rate and tough handed measures have not succeeded in effective crime control and reducing recidivism. The fact is that with only 5% of the World's population, the U.S accounts for almost 25% of the World prison population. [Jung, Hyunzee, (2010)] The U.S prison population rate of 701 per 10,000 is the highest in the world. Three fifths of the countries have prison population rates below 150 per 10,000. [Roy Wamsley, (2003)] From just 25,000 prisoners in 1980 to more than 2.3 million in 2009, the inmate population has exploded in the last 30 years. [OIG, (2009) pg 17] The high economic costs of a Justice system based on high incarceration model, has become a huge drain on the taxpayers. Overcrowded prisons have also contributed to increased clashes, healthcare issues, Prison gangs and an increase in sexual assaults of inmates. Recidivism rates is also among the highest in the world with prison studies reporting that almost two third of the released prisoners returning to prison on various crimes within the first three years of release. There is enough evidence that high incarceration is a failed and unsustainable model and it has negatively affected the prisoner reformation."

Sample of Sources Used:

  • OIG, (2009), 'Top Management and Performance challenges in the Department of Justice - 2009', retrieved Oct 7th 2010, from,
  • Roy Wamsley, (2003), 'World Prison population List', retrieved Oct 7th 2010, from,
  • Jung, Hyunzee, (Sep 2010), 'Recidivism and Survival Time: Racial Disparity among Jail Ex- Inmates', Social Work Research, retrieved Oct 7th 2010, from,
  • Don Stemen, (2009), 'Reconsidering Incarceration', retrieved Oct 7th 2010, from,
  • Jose Cid, (2009), 'Is Imprisonment Criminogenic?' Vol 6, 459-480, retrieved Oct 7th 2010, from,

Cite this Persuasive Essay:

APA Format

Reforming the Criminal Justice System (2013, April 30) Retrieved March 03, 2024, from

MLA Format

"Reforming the Criminal Justice System" 30 April 2013. Web. 03 March. 2024. <>