Sentencing In Germany

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I am Justice Jahneal Phillips, as a judge whose job is to sentence criminals to prisons; I am starting to find my job rather upsetting. The reason for my discomfort is that our correction system let retaliation gets the best of them and it only affecting us. Instead of correcting offenders’ bad behavior and helping them to follow the right path. We rather see them get to lock away, I do to some extent believe they should be punished. However, we have taken it too far and when we look at the bigger picture, it only hurt our pockets. After reading the article, Sentencing and Prison Practices in Germany and the Netherlands: Implications for the United States; watching documentary Michael Moore Goes to Norway & Visits a Prison of the Future; and…show more content…
these statistics leave many wondering why the U.S, an advanced nation like both countries incarceration rate so high, but Germany and The Netherland so low. However, by taking in different factors we are able to gain a clear understanding. The U.S considers crimes like burglary, drug trafficking and aggravated assaults as felonies; and therefore, they give long term sentences for these crimes. On the order hand, Germany and even Netherlands do not consider these crimes as felonies. Felony crimes in Germany are murder, manslaughter, rape, and robbery. Even those who commit these crimes do not get long sentences as those in the U.S. The minimum sentences for a felony crime in Germany is 1 year or more (Subramian, 2013, p. 8). Furthermore, instead of finding treatments for the mentally ill and those addicted to drugs, the U.S place them into prison. Whereas in The Netherland, a system known as Forensic Psychiatric Care Institutions, is developed to help the mentally ill. While those in Germany are sent to psychiatric hospitals. Instead of sending drug offenders to jail, “Both (Germany and The Netherlands) rely on the harm reduction approach as their primary response to drug use. This approach focuses on minimizing the risks and hazards of drug use and emphasizes health care, prevention, and regulation of individual…show more content…
When we look at our system and that of Germany, The Netherland and Norway, we should be embarrassed because they are doing much better than us when correcting behavior. Our correction system has failed to improve behavior, and as a result of their failure, the recidivism rate is at an all-time high. This has a lot to do with their correction goal; since the U.S main focus is retribution, rehabilitation is hardly used to help ex-offenders transition into society. Prisoners end up going back to prison because they aren’t rehabilitated; while in jail, they aren’t learning any social skills, and there is a lack of educational opportunities in prisons. So, has they get out, it is hard for them to find a job or a place to stay (Hermes, n.d.). As a result of these issues, they turn to illegal activities to support themselves; resulting in them getting re-arrested. The documentary Michael Moore return to Norway by… states that, our recidivism rate is nearly 80% while Norway recidivism rate is at 20% (Nor, 2016). Germany, The Netherland, and Norway have a low recidivism due to their rehabilitation model. These countries know that some point the prisoners have to return to society. So they try to help to return to society; they have special programs that help with their transition which has we can see is very
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