Drugs in Prison Essay

3335 Words Jul 2nd, 2005 14 Pages
Abstract
This research paper will consist of an analysis of the use and abuse of illicit drugs within the prison systems on a global basis. With information gathered from various sources such as the internet and one on one interviews with an inmate in a male correctional facility and a former inmate of a female correctional facility I intend to show the rampant flow of drugs in and out of the prison system, the control of (or lack there of) by prison officials, the drug gangs and dealers in correctional facilities, the rate of addiction, and treatments available to inmates suffering from addiction.

The introduction of drugs into the prison system has been an issue for corrections staff for many years. Prison officials
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Even though the men and women behind the walls are segregated from the outside world, the same trials and tribulations you or I must deal with each day are also dealt with by inmates. When looking at the reason why inmates feel the need to escape from reality, the same reasoning factors apply to those whom are not incarcerated choosing to abuse drugs. Low self-esteem, the inability to cope with the crime or crimes committed that caused incarceration and the deterioration of family relationships are just a few of the reasons inmates use to turn to the use of drugs.

At one point in time the high percentage of men and women who are drug abusers were a minority in the prison population worldwide. In 1998 Paul
Turnbull explored the prison population and found "…30% of prisoners in the
United Kingdom, two thirds of the prison population in the United States, and 25% of probation and prison population in Sweden are believed to be dependent drug users (Turnbull and Webster 1998)."# Studies have also found that inmates with previous drug abuse history are in fear of punishment when requesting treatment. Inmates who need to have drug treatment do not receive any assistance as their fear of punishment is overwhelming thus causing inmates to continue with their drug behavior.

The drug treatment options available to inmates varies on the country in which the individual is incarcerated. The

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