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Mental Health Problems And Prison Criminology Essay

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Privatization of prisons: what it is, the genesis, doors wide opened, the debate: why private correctional services, quality and efficiency of correctional services, efficiency and costs of incarceration.

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Accounting for privately-run prisons, public values and privatization of prisons, safety in private prisons, justice, rehabilitation and the incarceration of the mentally ill, legitimacy of private prisons, cite this work.

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Issue of Mental Health Support in Prisons

Info: 1794 words (7 pages) Nursing Essay Published: 11th Feb 2020

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Everyone experiences emotional ups and downs from time to time caused by certain events in our lives. Mental health related conditions go beyond these emotional reactions to specific situations. They are medical conditions that cause changes in how we think and feel and within our mood.

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Essay Mentally Ill in Prison

Incarceration of the mentally ill essay.

The United States criminal justice system has been continuously increasing incarceration among individuals who suffer from a sever mental illness. As of 2007 individuals with severe mental illness were over twice as likely to be found in prisons than in society (National Commission of Correctional Health Care, 2002, as cited in Litschge &Vaughn, 2009). The offenses that lead to their commitment in a criminal facility, in the majority of cases, derive from symptoms of their mental illness instead of deviant behavior. Our criminal justice system is failing those who would benefit more from the care of a psychiatric rehabilitation facility or psychiatric hospital by placing them in correctional facilities or prisons.

Mental Health In Prisons

In recent years, correctional facilities have begun to experience an influx of inmates who suffer with mental illness. Per Morgan, et al (2011), ?the United States has three times more individuals with severe mental illnesses in prisons than in psychiatric hospitals.? Most prisons in this country aren?t equipped to properly care for the mentally ill persons who enter the facility. Individuals with mental illness are more likely to be placed in prisons rather than a mental health institution to receive help to deal

Criminalization Of The Mentally Ill

Today, prison’s are again becoming the number one spot for the mentally ill to occupy. This increase is related to the discovery and use of psychotropic medications, which came into the picture in the 1950’s and 1960’s. This discovery of medication led to many psychiatric patients being released from psychiatric hospitals with the intention of them receiving treatment out in the community through primary care providers and clinics. The decrease in the amount of psychiatric patients in psychiatric

Essay On Mental Illness In Prison

Throughout the years, the United States criminal justice system has been constantly incarcerating individuals who endure from a severe mental illness. People who suffer from serious mental illness are doubtlessly to be discovered in prison. There is a significant amount of mentally ill offenders that are placed in the state and federal institutions. The mentally ill are overpopulating the prisons. The criminal justice system is a deficiency for those who can profit more from the help of mental health treatment center or psychiatric hospital by sending individuals to correctional facilities or prisons. Today’s jails and prisons are being labeled as the new mental health hospitals for the mentally ill offenders. Commonly in today’s society, it generally takes other individuals who are willing to educate and support the mentally ill person into becoming successful in life.

Unfair America: Mentally Ill Inmates Essay

Individuals suffering from mental illnesses tend to fall victim to the criminal justice system due to their uncontrollable actions that result from their mental illness symptoms. Within the United States two to three hundred thousand people in prison suffer from mental illnesses such as schizophrenia, severe depression, and bipolar disorder. Sadly, the majority of prisons are deficient in providing the appropriate resources to treat these individuals; people with mental illnesses are too frequently socially mistreated, neglected, and misunderstood within the confines of a prison. Prisons are deficient in correctional staff trained to suit mentally ill inmates, in

Inhumane Conditions In State Prisons

The inhumane conditions seen in state prisons today eerily mimic many of the same issues seen in state psychiatric institutions prior to the 1970s. These institutions sought to solve the problem off overcrowding by deeming many of them stable enough to leave, even though many of them were not. The patients were placed into group homes instead of hospitals. This caused an influx of people with mental health problems into a society where they could not function. Many of them inevitably ended up committing crimes, pushing them into the

Mental Illness Within The Prison System

The incarceration of those who are mentally ill is on the continual rise. Many states juggle with the decision of placing offenders in Mental Hospital or locating them in State Prisons. Latessa and Holsinger (2011) discuss two major reasons for the increase of those with mental illness within the prison system. First, many states have no longer allow for the insanity plea during criminal trials, thus those who suffer from mental illness are not required to receive mandatory mental treatment. This is due to the discomforting idea that criminal offenders should not be given the same living conditions as those whom are patients of mental wards. Secondly, longer sentences have created a surplus of mentally ill offenders needing treatment. Soderstrom (2007) added that the lack of mental health support systems in

The Treatment Of Mental Illness

The shutdown of state mental hospitals and lack of available financial and institutional resources force mentally ill people to the United States Judicial System for mental health. Every year thousands of people are arrested for various crimes and they are sent to jail. Sixteen percent of these people have some type of mental health problem (Public Broadcasting System , 2001). When we consider that the United States has the largest incarcerated population in the world at 2.2 million, this number is staggering (Anasseril E. Daniel, 2007). This is about 1% of the entire population of the United States. There are many reasons as to why the situation has taken such a bad turn and when the history of the treatment of mental illness is examined one can see how the situation developed into the inhumane disaster it is today.

Persuasive Essay On Prison Reform

Today, it seems almost incomprehensible that so many people with serious mental illnesses reside in prisons instead of receiving treatment. Over a century and a half ago, reform advocates like Dorothea Dix campaigned for prison reform, urging lawmakers to house the mentally ill in hospitals rather than in prisons. The efforts undertaken by Dix and other like-minded reformers were successful: from around 1870 to 1970, most of the United States’ mentally ill population was housed in hospitals rather than in prisons. Considering reformers made great strides in improving this situation over a century and a half ago. Granted, mental hospitals in the late 19th and early 20th century were often badly run and critically flawed, but rather than pushing for reform of these hospitals, many politicians lobbied for them to close their doors, switching instead to a community-based system for treating the mentally ill. Although deinstitutionalization was originally understood as a humane way to offer more suitable services to the mentally ill in community-based settings, some politicians seized upon it as a way to save money by shutting down institutions without providing any meaningful treatment alternatives. This callousness has created a one-way road to prison for massive numbers of impaired individuals and the inhumane warehousing of thousands of mentally ill people. Nevertheless, there are things that can be done to lower the rate mentally ill persons are being incarcerated. Such

The Criminalization of the Mentally Ill Essay

Another major factor is the lack of medical services in the prisons and jails. Many of the mentally ill are retained in the criminal justice system without the appropriate treatment needed because of the lack of trained staff in the mental illness field (Markowitz, 2011). There is usually limited access to treatment programs while incarcerated and a high risk of decomposition and deterioration (Rock, 2001). In a Frontline documentary on mental illness researchers estimated that about two thirds of the inmates in state facilities who did receive counseling or psychotropic drugs did not necessarily specialize in providing mental health services; leaving us to believe when the adequate treatment is being distributed is it being properly

Treatment Of The Mentally Ill And The Prison System

One of the most controversial issues regarding the mentally ill and the prison system is the medical treatment received. According to the film, “16% of the prison population in the state of Ohio, which reflects a national average, are persons who have been diagnosed with mental illness.” Prisons began as an institution designed to rehabilitate, however, a vast majority of prisons throughout the country do not provide adequate medical care for their mentally ill inmates. However, the prisons that do possess adequate health care are most likely the first instance in which the inmates with mental illness have received any sort of treatment in their entire life. People with chronic mental illness need constant supervision which they cannot get outside of prison. Although inmates does not receive the most extensive treatment, the treatment they do receive is well beyond the treatment they would have received had they stayed out of the criminal justice system.

Sentencing Mental Health Courts

Over the past thirty years, there has been a 500% increase in the U.S incarceration rate. (The Sentencing project, 2014) Advances in medicine, such as the discovery of psychoactive drugs, led to the deinstitutionalization of mentally ill patients from psychiatric hospitals. With a long record of horrific abuse,

Incarcerating The Mentally Ill Essay

But mentally ill individuals are usually unsafe if we make them one. Mental illness does not always lead to violence. In cases where violence occurs, the incident normally results from the same reasons as with a regular person; thus, feeling threatened, excessive use of alcohol and/or drugs, etc. However, some offenses that the mentally ill commits leave the government no option but to incarcerate them. These crimes also draw some people’s attention to the wrong side, making them agree with the government plan to imprison them. One of the cases that I believe contributes to this is Tarasoff v. The Regiments of the University of California’s case. Tarasoff v. The Regiments of the University of California is the case that flickered communities to look more into finding ways to protect the community (imprisoning the ill). This case consists of the premeditated murder of Tatiana Tarasoff by Prosenjit Poddar, who detailed to his therapist that he would commit the murder. Unfortunately, after all the assistance through therapy, Poddar still committed the crime. Situations like these made some people lose hope with psychiatric centers. Instead, they see mentally ill as criminals who are using their illness to their

Jennifer Bigham Insanity Dichotomy

A common misconception that many people have about the United States prison system is that it acts as a sanctuary for rehabilitation, and it is this misconception that allows people to believe that mentally ill prisoners who are sent to prison will receive the treatment that they need. Not only does life in prison provide added stress and anxiety to the already burdensome life of living with a mental illness, but with so many inmates in such close quarters, said mentally ill patients often get harassed and are unlikely to get the amount of attention from doctors and specialists that they truly need. With such stated lack of necessary attention and treatment, mentally ill prisoners often develop more severe symptoms than those that they entered with. Therefore, the time, energy, and resources that funnel into caring for the 1.3 million inmates with mental illness who are currently in the United States prison system should be shifted to focus on medication and or rehabilitation in an appropriate

The Issues Of The Criminal Justice System Essay

This research paper discusses the issues of people who suffer from mental illness being placed in jails instead of receiving the necessary treatment they need. The number of inmates serving time in jail or prison who suffer from mental illness continues to rise. In 2015 the Bureau of Justice reported that sixty five percent of state prisoners and fourth five percent of federal prisoners suffered from mental conditions such as bipolar disorder and schizophrenia. Individuals who suffer from these problems require special mental health treatment for their needs to be met. Many of our prisons and jails lack the necessary resources to care for these inmates and because of that inmates who do not receive the treatment they need are at a higher risk of becoming a repeat offender. Despite the research and findings that show that the criminal justice system is unable to deal with issues dealing with the mentally ill there has been limited solutions put in place. Given the challenges the criminal justice system faces it is important to address the problem and come up with better solutions. This research paper will discuss the various techniques and solutions that scholars have propped and their effect on the issue of mentally ill criminals and how the criminal justice system should approach the problem.

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Free Essay About Psychological Effects Of Imprisonment On Prisoners With Mental Health Needs

Type of paper: Essay

Topic: Psychology , Health , Prison , Medicine , Illness , Mental Health , Criminal Justice , Crime

Words: 1600

Published: 03/30/2020


Introduction Historically, putting a person into prison means that he or she committed an act in which the law prohibits. Ideally, imprisonment against a law offender is the way to give justice for those who were victimized or just a mere sanction because of their actions. Long ago, imprisonment was a form of punishment for those who did wrong against the society. Prisons were locked up inside the jail and being inflicted with sufferings on their bodies and in some cases, prisoners were tortured to death. However, the imprisonment concepts in our time are in contrast of what the old imprisonment concepts were. Our current model of imprisonment is not just a mere intention of corporal punishments, but a concept that works on the prisoner’s mind as well as his body. Part of today’s imprisonment concept is to rehabilitate the offender’s attitude, mold him to be a good person, and in make him ready to face the community as a better individual. Within the process of rehabilitation, many factors are affecting the individual’s well-being, including psychological effects. This specific factor is evident among prisoners who have mental health needs. Numerous evidence was written to show that imprisonment has both positive and negative effects to a prisoner that has a mental health illness.

Psychological Effects of Imprisonment

There are cases of imprisonment that could produce psychological trauma in which many symptoms that manifest psychopathology. Thus, the implications of mental health are potentially very important. At the most secure level of the prison, which is the Supermax or the maximum security unit, many psychological effects come out of the prisoners who are detained in such control unit. There are many mental health issues in this condition as well as the policies by which offenders are placed in them. Craig Haney (2003) asserts that one of the issues that include in this level of the control unit is the number of prisoners suffering from mental health issues. Since these prisoners are more challenged when it comes to their mental health, they are more likely to experience trauma compare to other prisoners who do not have a mental health issue. A normal prisoner would describe his confinement in a maximum-security as a form of psychological torture. Thus, most of them are in different degrees of psychic pain, which most of them are struggling to cope with everyday stress. However, given that almost everyone suffers from their confinement, there is a bigger chance that those prisoners with pre-existing mental health issues are the ones who have a greater risk of having these sufferings deepen into becoming more disabling and permanent (Haney, 2003). This is because a normal prisoner would be able to cope with his traumatic experiences faster than those who are already suffering from mental illness even before they got into strict confinement. This prisoner could have his mental illness into a worse as what they need is a different way to address their psychological needs than those who do not have a pre-existing mental illness. Haney (2003) added that prisoners who are more likely to have a risk are those who suffer from emotional instability, prisoners who have a depression or similar mood disorders, prisoners with a developmental disability, and prisoners whose reality contact is already weak. Upon evaluating Craig Haney’s claims, there is a good rationale to believe that many of these mentally challenged prisoners will be unable to endure the psychological assault of isolation, the lack human care contact, the profound inactivity and idleness. In addition, the otherwise extraordinary stressful nature of maximum confinement without the presence of significant decompensation and deterioration also affect prisoners. It is not only that prisoners with mental illness are vulnerable to having their mental issues worsen when they are imprisoned. These prisoners are also at risk of self-harm and suicide. Mentally ill prisoners are one of the contributors of numbers of suicide cases in prisons. Since they have less capability than normal prisoners when it comes to a broader way of thinking, mentally challenged prisoners may likely unable to cope with the prison environment that leads them to commit suicidal acts. Luke Birmingham (2003) claims that prison environments make them acutely distressed in which the feeling of helplessness, fear, and isolation may lead to harm or fatal act (Birmingham, 2003). Therefore, developing an approach on how to handle such cases involving prisoners with mental health needs is a must so as to protect them from self-inflicting actions. These people are somehow different in terms of how they think about something. They may experience an event that could be very stressful on their part in which some normal prisoners feel otherwise. That is why Birmingham (2003) concluded that a prison is an unremitting place, which gives conditions that are unsuitable for those who suffer from severe mental issues. Thus, it may be safe to say that a prisoner is a vulnerable place to develop a mental health problem and that people who have pre-existing mental health issues are susceptible to imprisonment. Moreover, imprisonment has no benefit to a person’s mental health because not all prisoners with mental health problems are being transferred to a mental health institution for proper treatment. Birmingham (2003) also added that some prisoners who have mental health needs are not being detected by prison staff that makes the former’s condition become worse. The purpose of imprisonment is to allow the prisoners to reflect and rediscover their conscience through spiritual conversion. Imprisonment is designed to let the prisoners go back to what they have done wrong and start their new life that begins in the prison. However, it was later discovered that being inside the prison is a form of torture (Tomar, 2013). The torture that was written in the article states that the imprisonment tortures the prisoners psychologically. It is relatively applicable especially to prisoners suffering from mental health illness. In fact, there are adverse psychological effects that imprisonment brings, which would worsen the mental health issues. Tomar (2013) added that these undesirable effects are dissatisfactions with life, delusions, excessive depression, and even claustrophobia in which the latter is also known to be bad for people who have mental health needs. Along with these effects are feeling of panic, madness on many instances, which may all boils down to one common effect and that are the psychological stress. Once a prisoner with mental health needs experiences a lot of stress in the prison, and the outcome of hurting themselves physically may occur. On the other hand, there is a running program that may help provide positive results for prisoners with mental health needs (Tomar, 2013). A new field in psychology, which is called positive psychology, studies factors that nurture and produce positive emotions. Its aim is to break the abundance of negative feeling inside the prison that can worsen the psychological status of prisoners with mental health needs. Therefore, negative effects of imprisonment could turn into positive ones by applying positive thoughts to prisoners with mental health needs. What Shivani Tomar wrote is an example that, in a positive way, a prisoner suffering from mental health issues may adapt this program’s goal after the required mental health treatment. However, it could be better if this program will be applied throughout the prisons. It also shows that there could be a way to treat, rehabilitate, and make the prisoners with mental health needs to be ready to go back and be with the normal community. This program could be a great help for prisoners especially those who have mental health needs. However, it is still evident that the imprisonment has its natural atmosphere that directly affects mentally sick prisoners. Thus, it was also concluded that imprisonment could have a previous well person to weaken his mental health, which could eventually lead his mental health to worse ( In addition, prisoners’ mental illness symptoms deteriorate while inside the prison. There are a number of factors that cause this mental deterioration, which may include non-adherence to medication, inadequate treatment, and even stressful events in life to which being imprisoned serves as an example.

Suffering from mental illness is difficult, but what makes it worse is when the patient is inside the prison. Being inside the atmosphere of the prison could affect a person psychologically and could worsen the mental health needs of those who have pre-existing mental health problems. There are numerous factors that could deteriorate these pre-existing mental issues. Thus, these factors perhaps are hard to get rid of especially in the prison’s atmosphere. Therefore, it is safe to say that prison has negative psychological effects more than a positive on prisoners who have mental health needs, and these types of prisoners must primarily be treated to avoid worse mental health possibilities.

Burmingham, L. (2003). The Mental Health of Prisoners. Advances in Psychiatric Treatment, 9, 191-201. doi:10.1192/apt.9.3.191 Haney, C. (2003). Mental Health Issues In Long-Term Solitary and "Supermax" Confinement. Crime and Delinquency, 49(1), 124-156. doi:10.1177/0011128702239239 The Offender Health Research Network (2010, April). The Pathway of Prisoners with Mental Health Problems through Prison Health Services and the Effect of the Prison Environment on the Mental Health of Prisoners. Retrieved from Tomar, S. (2013). The Psychological Effects of Incarceration on Inmates: Can we Promote Positive Emotion on Inmates. Delphi Psychiatry Journal, 16(1), 66-72. Retrieved from

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mental health in prisons essay uk

Essay On Mental Health In Prison

Confederate memorial day essay.

Another issue that the American prison systems were facing was their constant practice of locking away mentally ill individuals to very long prison sentences that only seriously worsened their conditions, and even made their chances of overcoming mental illness, nearly impossible. Even medications that were prescribed to these individuals made them suffer serious and sometimes even worse, side effects. Although some states banned the high rates of mentally ill individuals to prisons, this only meant they were more targeted and thrown in jail for petty offenses by police. Many prisons do not have the resources, nor the skills needed to adequately and appropriately care for the mentally ill, therefore many of them suffer and even die from this

The Pros And Cons Of Deterrence And Recidivism

Crime prevention is a key aim of the criminal justice system. Offenders are incarcerated in prisons in a expectation that they will feel punished enough to learn from their mistakes and not commit further crimes, this is called deterrence and is a main goal of prisons today (Daly, 2003). Prisons in their current form are often overcrowded, anxiety inducing, restrictive and have been found to exacerbate the mental health of offenders (Matthews, 2016). In saying this, research by Crank and Brezina (2012) suggests that some offenders find prison ‘easier than being on the street’. Crank and Brezina (2012) conducted a study where they surveyed a large group of inmates and questioned them on their views of being incarcerated. Many

The Pros And Cons Of Supermax Prison

This week’s text revealed that offenders spending more than six years in a supermax prison, will suffer from mental illness. Long term solitary confinement promotes anger, confusion, and depression within inmates (Schmalleger & Smykia, 2015). Nevertheless, there are no studies that support the claim of confinement causing mental illness. If a person causes harm to any innocent victim for any reason and is convicted of the heinous crime(s) he or she should be sentenced

Mental Illness In Correctional Facilities

The correctional facilities should provide evaluations and specific psychological test to determine if the person has a mental illness or if they do not while in jail. Inmates that have mental illness should be sent to a mental health facilities rather than being kept in jail where they not receiving the help they need. If the inmate is not treated for the proper mental disorder than they can be a danger to the correctional facilities and themselves. Lastly, if inmates are giving a psychological test then the correctional facilities will stop overlooking the inmates with a mental illness that need to be in a mental health facilities rather than housed in jail.

John Burke Case Study

More people get incarcerated for non-violent crimes and crimes caused by mental illnesses or drug abuse (Webb, 2009) and because these people get put in regular prisons, instead of in mental health facilities or facilities to help against drug addiction, where they could be treated to further prevent crimes driven by their illness (Webb, 2009), the prisons get overfilled and cannot hold the more ‘important’ prisoners that needed to be locked away from the public.

Professionalism In Corrections

Additionally, in an attempt to foster an increase in professionalism within the correctional community, care and consideration must be taken with the care and housing of inmates both privately operated and those operated by some branch of the government. “The quality of prisons has improved from the past, but there continue to be too many inhumane new prisons. New construction does not always result in a prison conductive to humane incarceration” (Bartollas,

Essay On Prison Education

I have never before visited a prison nor have I met a prisoner in my entire life. Why should I care about someone whom I would rarely see? But these inmates are our brothers and sisters who may have made bad choices, but don’t want their mistakes to hold them back. Throughout my life, my once miserable and hopeless circumstances were transformed by education, and I am certain that the same principle can be applied to anyone, including inmates, despite our differences in how we responded to circumstances. It is true that prison takes nearly everything away from them – even their hopes and dreams. But they have the time to correct past mistakes. In doing so, if they can learn from the worst time of their lives, upon release, they will enter the

Mentally Ill In Prisons

Today there are more mentally ill people in prisons and jails in the United States than any hospital or psych facility in this country. Cook County Jail in Chicago, Illinois is the largest mental health institution in the country. When a mentally ill person gets arrested for a violent crime they stay three to four times longer than a regular violent offender. “One third of those incarnated in cook county jail suffers from psychological disorders.” According to a 2006 Justice Department study, more than half of prisoners in the United States Suffer from some sort of mental health problem. The study also says that among female inmates one third of them have some type of mental disorder. In prisons and jails, prisoners sit in their cells majority

Prison Rates In Australia Essay

Research from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS, 2001) found that there were 21,714 prisoners within Australian corrective facilities as of June 30, 2000. Where subsequently, the imprisonment rate was 148 prisoners per 100,000 population (ABS, 2001). Whereas statistics from the ABS taken in 2015, illustrate that the imprisonment rate had increased to 196 prisoners per 100,000 adult populations. Moreover, the overall recorded number of prisoners as of June 30, 2015, was 33,789 (ABS, 2015). From this it is apparent that in the period from 2000 to 2015, there was a significant increase of 12,075 individuals in the general prison population of

Prison Reform Research Paper

In order to do this they need to make new centers to help prisoners inside better themselves. In Alabama prisons may soon shut down 14 of its prisons for overcrowding, neglect, and violence in the state’s correction systems. In the prison St. Clair Holman in Alabama the prison system makes prisoners act different. There is no safety, security or supervision. “We have people being killed, sexually assaulted, raped, stabbed on daily basis at St. Clair, Holman, and multiple facilities; it’s a systemwide problem,” said Charlotte Morrison, a senior attorney at the Equal Justice Initiative (EJI), which represents Alabama prisoner.” Within this quote we see that in St. Clair prison, inmates get raped and stabbed. These are reasons why prisons should be reformed. Prisoners shouldn’t be hurt for whatsoever problems. Conversely, Penal Reform International article suggested different reasons to reform prisons one that stood out to reform the particular prison in Alabama was this, Provide a healthy, safe environment. “Spaces that are filled with sunlight, outside views, therapeutic color schemes and normalized materials, encourage inmates’ participation, reduce stress, incidents and assaults and decrease staff absenteeism.” Considering the fact that prisoners in Alabama are brutally hurting each other in their cells, we can conclude that if prisons provided a safe environment bad

Substantive Issues In Corrections

Mentally ill offenders comprise a huge segment of the country 's prison populace, bringing about various difficulties to correctional administrators who lack formal preparation or instruction on the best way to communicate, look after, and secure this specific populace (Pittaro, 2017). Correctional administrators confront a large group of difficulties with regards to mentally ill inmates. These particular inmates require more supervision and more care with respect to their prosperity in the correctional facility that they reside in. In most facility, the mentally ill prisoners are restricted to the minimum about of counseling services which may prompt troublesome practices. As indicated by an article written by Lloyd I. Sederer, M.D., "All patients have both a right to treatment and a right to refuse treatment (Sederer, n.d).” Despite the fact that being imprisoned can be difficult for the most advantageous individual, it 's harder for an individual diagnosed with an acute psychiatric illness. Correctional administrators have to battle with the idea of giving more supervision, specific mental care, and prescriptions that are not generally available to help with their conduct and other

Me Facing Life: Cyntoia's Story By Daniel H. Birman

Regrettably, studies are showing that mentally ill inmates are not being provided sufficient care to be properly rehabilitated. Understaffing of mental health professionals, ill-equipped facilities, and excessive use of solitary confinement are all contributing factors to the failing treatment of mentally ill inmates. Due to the inability to successfully treat mental illnesses behind bars these inmates are suffering. Numerous mentally ill inmates are victimized by other inmates, commit suicide, or find themselves in a cycle of facing reimprisonment upon release. Strategic and comprehensive treatment programs need to be implemented in prisons to combat these issues. Qualified mental health professionals, expunging the use of solitary confinement, and

Review Of Just Mercy By Bryan Stevenson

They have become alienated by society, and are strangers to their friends and family. The psychological impact of incarcerating an innocent or undeserving individual can be detrimental. Post-victimization disorders such as post acute stress disorder and PTSD can cause emotional detachment, despair, hostility, and increased risk of various phobias (Polifroni, 2018). Unwarranted subjectivity to extreme punishment and condemnation leaves victims with a host of potential social, emotional, and psychological deficits including distrust, dependance on institutions, diminished self-worth, post-traumatic stress reactions and more (Haney, 2002). The process of being incarcerated brings about several psychological adaptations, brought about by the extreme demands of living in prison. Even after release, the counterproductive, deeply internalized patterns learned in prison are still present (Haney, 2002). In addition, the rate of incarceration of mentally ill individuals is alarming. Suspects will mental and developmental disorders are often unfairly sent to prison without regard to their conditions, leaving them helpless. Mentally ill inmates have an even more difficult time adjusting to life in prison, leaving them at an even higher risk for psychological

Solitary Confinement Effects

There are currently two types of solitary confinement that are commonly used today. The first is known as disciplinary segregation, which is used when an inmate breaks the rules. Secondly there is administrative segregation for when an inmate is seen as being a risk to the safety of staff or even other prisoners. Even though the means and conditions may vary from facility to facility the average time spent in confinement is thirty seven days. While some research defends that solitary confinement may be a humane practice for prisons to use, the majority still argues that a wide range of psychological and physiological effects are associated with solitary confinement. These effects can be greatly enhanced in people with mental health problems,

Advantages Of Incarceration In Australia

As well as educational programs, prisons also give the opportunity of work to inmates. 7

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The Mental Health Effects of Being in Prison

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As the NHS England’s Director of Health & Justice, I believe you will find this of great interest. It is commonly known that inadequate mental healthcare in prisons in the UK has been an alarming issue, with increasing mental health illness among prisoners. According to the House of Commons Committee of Public Accounts, a staggering figure of 90% of prisoners is of those with a mental illness, including actions of suicide and self-harm. As stated by the Prison Reform Trust, which aims to inform the public of prison standards and improve treatment of prisoners, 40% of prisons had ‘inadequate or no training’ years 2016-17 for officers whose responsibility it is to refer prisoners for support.

It is no wonder that the PPO (Prisons and Probations Ombudsman) discovered that in 29% of suicide cases, no mental health support referral was made even after such needs were initially identified. Overall, as much as 70% of prisoners who committed suicide had been identified with mental illness. This suggests that it could have been prevented with a robust and effective scheme for mental health support, as the current basic training is insufficient.

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This is a current issue highlighted by the abundance of campaigns to improve care in prisons such as: ‘Inside Reform’, ‘Care not Custody’ and ‘Too little Too late’.

Particularly the ‘Care not Custody’ campaign was inspired by a tragic death of a young prisoner who took his own life in Manchester prison. He suffered from schizophrenia and did not receive the necessary treatment. Ginn (2012) expands on these issues in the article ‘Dealing with Mental Disorders in Prisoners’ from the BMJ.

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Criticising the short and basic mental health examinations of prisoners coming into the prison, Ginn reinforces that this fails to identify many mental health disorders in inmates, especially those more severe ones. These are also said to be undertaken by insufficiently trained staff, which appears to be a consistent back fall of prison’s ability to provide support. Firstly, the outstanding issue of a lack of trained staff working with vulnerable inmate needs to be addressed. A mandatory scheme should be implemented to raise awareness, knowledge and the competency of prison staff in terms of mental illness in their institutions. All current and future prison workers, who’s responsibility it is to make assessments of prisoner’s mental health and refer interventions, should complete a specially designed training course. They then should be overlooked by senior members of staff to ensure this is being undertaken appropriately.

Secondly, a thorough assessment should be made upon arrival all prisoners, this way everyone can be monitored. Especially since the Human Rights Watch (2003) suggested that suicide is at its biggest increase in the first week, mental stability needs to be assessed early on. Also, because there is evidence for early intervention being beneficial in reducing symptoms of depression and anxiety (Sorensen, Larsen, Bording and Munk-Jorgensen 2013) as well as schizophrenia (McGlashan 1996). Following on from this, a scheme should be implemented where every 3 months, prisoners are checked up on to ensure their needs are not being neglected. The time between check-ups should vary depending on the mental illness severity and needs of the individual. Goodman, McKay & DePhillippis (2013) found evidence for progress monitoring significantly improving mental health by making treatments more effective. Not only this but trust and engagement in the treatment is also shown to improve.

Feedback should also be implemented given to the prisoners about their progress, as this is also a strong factor which results in positive outcomes of treatment (Goodman et al. 2013). This would not only benefit the prisoners themselves, but also their families if their loved ones are given the appropriate support. The society could potentially become a safer and one of less crime, since there is evidence research for treatment leading to less reoffending in some offenders. For example, one third of experimental studies into treatment and reoffending across the world showed strong effects of treatment on the reduction of repeating sexually motivated crimes (Brooks-Gordon and Bilby 2006). Other types of offenders which threaten the society are gang members. Placido, Simon, Witte, Gu & Wong (2006) found that following an intensive cognitive behavioural therapy programme, gang members repeated offences significantly less. Such treatment is an expense, but Placido et al. (2006) estimates that it outweighs the cost of reoffending as well as human costs of not implementing such treatment.

Therefore, such treatments can be considered valuable and rewarding. In closing, it is clear that there are overwhelming benefits to the mentioned changes. The three aims are to improve training of workers to ensure effective identification and treatment of disorders, conduct mandatory and thorough assessments of all prisons upon arrival and to organise regular check-ups on prisoners’ mental state whilst they’re in prison. It should be seen as a righteous investment into the dignity and well-being of the citizens in our society. Recidivism rates and mental illness will not decline if changes aren’t employed to help the vulnerable. I hope you will carefully consider this as a matter which needs immediate action.

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Problems of Prisoners With Mental Illness

American criminal justice system is a controversial subject, and many of its aspects are issues of current interest. The United States has as much as 200,000 women incarcerated – the greatest number among the world’s countries – and the female prison population is steadily rising (Sawyer, 2015). Many of the female inmates have mental health issues as well, which complicates both their stay in correction facilities and their life afterward. These difficulties, combined with the increasing number of incarcerated women, suggest that prison is not the best place for treating the mentally ill, and other alternatives should be considered, at least for non-violent offenders.

However ironic it may seem, the criminal justice system in its current state is housing a far greater share of people with mental health issues than the healthcare system itself. There are estimations that the mentally ill in prisons and other criminal justice facilities outnumber their counterparts in hospitals ten to one (Sawyer, 2015). Yet, if one thinks about it, caring for the mentally ill cannot and should not be the responsibility of the criminal justice system because it conflicts with its primary purpose.

The main goal of judicial officers is to prevent criminals from doing more harm to society, and this is what their training and skills are honed for. Helping people with mental conditions is not – and, by any honest estimation, should not – be the responsibility of those whose job is isolating people from society.

Those incarcerated with mental illness face difficulties both during their terms in prison and after it. In prisons, the mentally ill demonstrate a higher risk of suicide attempts and have to be put on suicide watch more often (Sawyer, 2015). Apart from that, there is also the issue of medications. The inmates take them during their prison terms and should receive a certain amount when getting out, but it does not always happen (Sawyer, 2015). The absence of medications, along with other factors, may turn former inmates into recidivism and see them back in prison shortly.

To make matters worse, more and more people with mental conditions are entering American prisons with each passing year. As mentioned above, the criminal justice system houses ten times as many mentally ill individuals as hospitals (Sawyer, 2015). There may be different explanations for this tendency, but the most evident one is simplicity. Isolating the mentally ill from society in correctional institutions is simpler than trying to aid them – but, as demonstrated by the recidivism rates, this approach does not help rehabilitation.

More importantly, still, incarceration is not the only option, as there are other approaches instead of just locking people up. Other Western countries experimented with replacing prison terms with fines and creating transition and support groups for non-violent offenders (Sawyer, 2015). There are also suggestions that this alternative would only cost a fraction of the expenditure on the current prison system (Sawyer, 2015). Admittedly, such an approach would be more complicated from an organizational perspective, as it would require departing from the established practices, but it has notable potential benefits in terms of economy and human well-being alike.

To summarize, prisons are not the best place for the ever-increasing numbers of mentally ill, but, despite this fact, host more and more of them. Providing care for those with mental illness is not a job for the criminal justice system, but prisons still remain one of the primary destinations for them – likely due to the simplicity of such an approach.

However, both the expensiveness of this method and the difficulties it creates for correction and rehabilitation suggest that other options could be better. Greater fines instead of prison terms and transition and support groups for non-violent offenders might be a cheaper and more efficient alternative.

Sawyer, D. (Director). (2015). A nation of women behind bars [Film]. ABC.

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Mental Health Issues In Prison Essay

mental health in prisons essay uk

Show More Nowadays, close to 50% of the prison population have mental health problems, and it has become one of the serious social problems in the U.S. After the federal program of deinstitutionalizing psychiatric facilities began in1960’s, the government closed down most of the mental health hospitals. Ever since then, the number of prisoners keeps increasing every year. Mentally ill prisoners usually carry many problems in prison . For example, it is hard for them to follow the prison rules; therefore, they are more likely to be charged of facility rule violation. Many of mentally ill offenders and prisoners have been struggling with their mental health problems, but the U.S justice system seems not being very supportive about them. Even prison guards …show more content… Also, prison guards have claimed that sometime mentally ill prisoners act quite dangerous. According to the article “Violence Behind Bars”, “Something is happening that’s causing inmates to act out in quite serious and dangerous ways, sand stuff do not have that situation under control”. (Grisson). Even though they want to give them treatments, if mentally ill prisoners may be threaten to prison guards or other inmates, the only thing they can do is to place them into a cell and separate from other inmates. For example, 18 years old mentally ill prisoner in Arizona jail attacked four prison guards that resulted in one hospitalized with server injure. According to the prison employee, this prisoner had never shown violence behavior before. Everything that happened was unexpected. Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio said, "We never know what is going to happen in jail, especially in the psychiatric ward" (The Independent Study). There are many situations that prison guards cannot even control mental health prisoners. For this kind of situation, no one knows the solution. Not only mentally ill prisoners suffer in prion, but also prisons guards suffer to deal with prisoners who have mental heal

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