The Negative Effects Of Prison Overcrowding

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Prison Overcrowding is a topic that isn’t brought up much in the media. However, it’s one that should be addressed more than it is. Overcrowding puts Correctional Officer’s safety at risk as well as the safety of inmates. There must be a way to reduce the number of inmates or possibly build additional prisons. Prison overcrowding has many negative effects ranging from sickness, to even death. The first article I want to discuss is “Underfunded, Overcrowded State Prisons Struggle With Reform”. On February 1, 2017 a group of prisoners took four officers hostage at James T. Vaughn Correctional Facility. In this hostage situation they killed Lt. Steven Floyd, whom was the highest-ranking officer on his floor. Since this event, it has caused…show more content…
Overcrowding contributes “to increased inmate conduct, which negatively affects the safety and security of inmates and staff”. When inmates are packed into small spaces, it will cause issues and tension. In most cases two or three prisoners bunk in a room that is only intended for one person. For example, overcrowding causes the prisons to cut back on the time prisoners are allowed to be in certain spaces such as the cafeteria, recreational areas, and television rooms. According to Maurer “Some of this sounds small and trivial, but it adds up”. The crowded cells make inmates lose privacy which will make them mad. If the prisoners get irritated enough, that’s when the riots will begin. Which not only puts the lives of Corrections Officers in jeopardy but other inmates in the prison. In addition to, there’s a possibility that the hazards of prison overcrowding could leak outside of prison walls. With the decreases in the budgets in the prison system, inmates have less access to being rehabilitated. They don’t receive job training, education or get access to drug treatment programs. Which in turn will cause them to re-enter society without the help they need. This will result in more repeat offenders that will eventually commit crimes and end up back in prison. Since there are so many prisoners as opposed to guards, the guards must focus more on the security rather than the
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