Drugs in the Prison System Essay

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Drugs in the Prison System

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.
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The introduction, transportation, and sale of drugs
within a prison can result in another felony charge for an inmate. Many
inmates use commissary items such as coffee, sugar, and other items to
conceal the requested drugs. For example, by handing another inmate a cup
of coffee a correctional officer does not know if there are drugs within the
cup unless the officer physically handles the cup. Drugs can also be passed
from one inmate to another by physically putting into the inmates handle as
discreetly as possible.

There are several questions that have been asked over the years regarding
inmates and the use of drugs, such as how is it easier for an inmate whom is
under constant supervision by correctional staff to have easy access to
drugs, why do inmates feel the need to escape from the reality of prison
life and why are existing drug addicts not receiving treatment for their
drug abuse? Several studies have been conducted worldwide delving into why
inmates are using drugs while incarcerated. The authors of an article in
the British Medical Journal (BMI) researched this very issue. They did a
study on 548 men at Durham prison in Elvet, England. All of these men were
awaiting trial. The study found that prior to sentencing many inmates were
using drugs. Specifically "...57 percent were using illicit drugs, 33
percent had problems of drug…