Adult Prisons

2036 Words9 Pages
The value of personal safety and security is extremely important to all of us. Keeping ourselves safe from violent offenders of any age should be a top priority, otherwise we would be living in fear rather than believing in our justice system which was created to protect us. However, an issue that has continually created tension in our society is whether juvenile offenders should be tried as adults. Society has forever distinguished an adult from a child in virtually all matters. When children commit the same heinous crimes, however, the distinction between the two is difficult for society to make. As a consequence, juveniles in most cases are tried as adults and if found guilty are being put in adult prisons to serve out their term. The society’s…show more content…
The physical and psychological impact of prison is far more likely to have a serious and negative impact than a similar sentence would have on an adult prisoner. Juveniles should never be in prison with adults because not only they are more likely to be corrupted by the prison environment, but there is also the persistent danger of abuse including sexual abuse and health risks. ‘The greatest danger is physical and sexual assault by adults housed in the same facility, including inmate trustees who may have access to juveniles in ‘separate’ quarters in jail.’ (Clement 395). Juvenile delinquents need help and a direction in life should be given to them. Placing them in adult prison subjects them to violence and exploitation, and deprives them of the chance to start their new lives. Author Howell C.James, reveals in his book Juvenile Justice and Youth Violence that ‘An OOJJDP study (Flaherty, 1980) found the suicide rate among jailed juveniles to be seven times as high as the rate among juveniles held in detention centers. Experience had shown that juveniles did not receive basic services (counseling, medical, recreational) in facilities constructed and operated for adults’ (Howell 36). Minors in an adult prison are having their most creative years destroyed and they are certainly not learning how to be good citizens by being abused by inmates three times their age. Putting juvenile offenders in with adults increases their chances offending again when they are
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