The correctional system refers to the part of the massive criminal justice system, which includes the police, courts, and prosecution as well. Evidently, these correctional systems serve numerous functions in America. The systems comprise of different government agencies which are responsible for protecting citizens from dangerous individuals. Further, the correction systems were also designed in order to keep the society safe from people who commit crimes. The criminals are held in either a prison or jail (Currie, 2013). The duty of correctional system is to make sure that offender’s sentence has been carried out in prison or jail, community service or probation. From the academic perspectives, the four goals of these correctional systems are: rehabilitation, deterrence, incapacitation, and retribution. Jails and prisons are facilities that hold individuals who commit crimes, thus reducing crime incidents in societies.
Compare and Contrast the Prison and the Jail Systems
One of the significant differences is the period of stay in these correctional systems. Jails temporary hold individuals who have been recently arrested or people charged with a particular crime, and they are unable to pay a bail or a bond (Currie, 2013). It also houses people with short sentences, which are probably less than a year. In contrast, prisons house criminal for long term imprisonment. Most of the convicted criminals serve their sentence in prison. Jails are run by the county department. In contrast, the prisons are run by the federal government. Since these systems are purposely made to house inmates for years and months, prison facilities are well developed, unlike the jail.
Besides the differences, there are numerous similarities as well. In both systems, individuals have the right to be visited by their friends and families (Currie, 2013). They are also entitled to basic rights that any employers could have. Some of these rights include right to be treated humanely, protection against unusual and cruel punishment and also right to be free from any sexual harassments and crimes. Further, both are also entitled to medical care and the right not to suffer from any racial discrimination (Currie, 2013). Both systems house host individuals who have committed crimes. Further, they also offer early released programs.
Gangs in prisons and jails are viewed as a security threat. These groups are known to violate prison and jail rules. Some of the rules broken by the gangs include drug trafficking, assaulting inmates and other sexual acts and exploitation (Cole et al., 2017). As a matter of fact, when left uncontrolled and ineffectively managed, the violent acts of these individuals can lead to numerous riots and disruptions as well. In fact, these groups pose severe management problem and a major concern to the correctional administrators. For this reason, the correctional administrators face challenges in efforts to manage and control these gangs.
Undeniably, the number of mentally ill inmates in prisons is increasing. Thus, correctional administrators experience numerous challenges when dealing with such people. The officers must work hard to ensure that, regardless of their challenges, the inmates’ needs are met (Cole et al., 2017). The mentally ill inmates require more care and supervision. The administrators must make sure that the inmates have full access to counseling services which will help in preventing the disruptive behaviors.
Undeniably, in the correctional systems, most inmates are living with HIV due to sharing needles, tattooing and drug use just to mention a few. However, these risks are high among women (Cole et al., 2017). Most of the challenges facing administrators in such cases are ensuring that the well being of the inmates is not neglected at all costs. It is the role of the correctional officials to make sure that the inmates receive basic healthcare.
In conclusion, correctional systems are significant in today’s society. Perhaps, without these systems the society would be full of crimes. Being familiar with the dissimilarities between a prison and a jail makes it easier to understand how serious offenses are. Further, it will also help an individual understand the expectations in case one of a family member has been convicted. In these correctional systems, the administrators are faced with diverse challenges, especially when dealing with the gangs, mentally ill and HIV/AIDS inmates.