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Prisoner rehabilitation

Prisoner rehabilitation

Our current method of reintegrating prisoners into society is a disaster. It is no wonder that we have high reoffending rates when at the end of their sentence prisoners are released on the streets to fend for themselves. They do get some support but not enough. In an environment where they carry the stigma of their conviction it is hard for them to get a job and provide the income needed to re-establish themselves. Some are lucky enough to come back to supportive families, many don’t. I propose that funding be made available to support prisoners for at least a year after release. That would include:

  • Accommodation, food, clothing, etc.
  • Life skills training – everything from how to wash your clothes to how to apply for a job, whatever they need to be a self-sufficient, law abiding citizen
  • Help to integrate into social networks – particularly those that would otherwise find themselves back in their old criminal networks otherwise.
At all costs they need to be placed in an environment where they are not tempted to turn back to crime in order to support themselves or their families. Yes, this will cost money, but the cost is likely to be repaid by a reduction in crime and an increase in productivity. Like any good policy, this one would be subject to tracking and assessment. If the evidence in the form of lower recidivism does not exist after 5 years, another policy would replace it.

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    • Dennis Ingram
      commented 2016-12-04 08:33:21 +1300
      Prisoners do get training now, but I don’t think this is enough. Some will come out to a supportive environment and go straight, but think of the ex-con who has no family other than their gang. They come from an abusive family background and have never held a job. Perhaps they have fetal alcohol syndrome. These people need serious help – they need to learn how to live in a society where we work for a living rather than live off the proceeds of crime. If we don’t give them a plan B, they will simply offend again and again and again, bouncing between prison and committing their next crime. There are more of these people than we would care to admit. An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure – I would rather invest in preventing ex-prisoners from reoffending than wait for my turn to be a victim.
    • John Draper
      tagged this with important 2016-12-04 07:32:14 +1300
    • Tim O'Donnell
      commented 2016-12-03 20:46:27 +1300
      I agree with needing to improve prisoner rehabilitation but I think that may be with re training. They won’t all want to but they need good options. They effectively get social benefits when they get out just like anyone else.
    • Tim O'Donnell
      tagged this with interesting 2016-12-03 20:46:27 +1300
    • Dennis Ingram
      published this page in Suggestions 2016-12-03 19:18:34 +1300