Our February topic explores Correctional Systems World Wide. I will share some personal topic thoughts and review of some research I conducted. In the United States, we have some very good correctional systems and some that require additional assistance for improvements. This is true throughout the world. To try and provide a detailed overview for corrections at the international level would require additional research and contain more information than provided below. Our monthly topics are allotted a minimal word range. Areas to consider were jails, probation and parole, and facilities. I selected some specific areas to discuss. What I hope to accomplish is to generate an interest in international corrections and plant the seed for you to review and conduct your own research with the resources provided.
When looking at international corrections, we also must be mindful of that country legal mandates and laws. What may be consider cruel in the United States may not be so in that country. We also must consider the culture of the country we are researching. The following areas are a common theme throughout correctional systems:
As you can see, we could continue building an exhaustive list. Reminder, I am providing some resources and a table of contents for you to review and select which ones to pursue for additional information.
- Safety Concerns for Staff and Inmates
- Lack of resources. There are limited resources that affect prison conditions; lack of programs; overcrowding; old and unsafe prisons; lack of training; and other.
- Quality of services
- Quality of training
- Lack of adequate medical and mental health services
- LGBTI (Sexual Orientation)
- Understanding the country discussing culture
- Contraband and gangs
United Nations Peacekeeping https://peacekeeping.un.org/en/corrections
“In times of conflict, people deprived of their liberty are often overlooked, disregarded or denied their rights. UN Peacekeeping works to ensure prisoners are not forgotten. Many systems of justice entail punishment by imprisonment, but there are standards that this punishment must meet. Our corrections components protect the rights of prisoners to help promote faith in a country’s legal system and the long-term stability it fosters.”
Global Correctional Association
- Justice and Corrections Standing Capacity News (JCSC) January 2019
- Justice and Corrections Update
- Handbook for Judicial Affairs Officers in UN Peacekeeping Operations ·
- Prison Incident Management Handbook
- Prison Support in United Nations Peace Operations
- Lessons learned on combatting impunity in the Democratic of Republic of the Congo
- Policy on justice support in UN peace operations
- Non-paper on DPKO support for Strengthening Justice and Corrections Systems
- Standard Operating Procedures for Government-Provided Corrections Personnel on Assignment with United Nations Peacekeeping Operations and Special Political Missions
“ACA’s International Core Standards provide the basis for accreditation of correctional institutions throughout the world, supplying organizations with the information they need to pursue and maintain excellence in correctional practices.”
Prison Policy Initiative
International Corrections Comparisons
As I mentioned earlier, there are additional topics provided in each resource I included. I always found it interesting to compare and contrast correctional systems worldwide. Who knows whatwe may find? I included some additional information and data that may be useful in our own systems. Since we are corrections professionals; it is imperative we work toward improving our correctons’ knowledge. I hope you enjoy the resources and find them useful.
- “States of Women's Incarceration: The Global Context 2018 Prison Policy Initiative, June, 2018“This report updates how U.S. women fare in the world's carceral landscape, comparing incarceration rates for women of each U.S. state with the equivalent rates for countries around the world.”
- States of Incarceration: The Global Context 2018 Prison Policy Initiative, June, 2018“Compared to the rest of the world, every U.S. state relies too heavily on prisons and jails to respond to crime.”
- Life imprisonment: A Policy Briefing Penal Reform International and University of Nottingham, May, 2018(The number of people serving formal life sentences has risen by nearly 84 percent in 14 years.)
- Global Prison Trends 2018 Penal Reform International, May, 2018(This report analyzes trends in criminal justice and the use of imprisonment, showing that while overall crime rates around the world have declined, the number of people in prison on any given day is rising.)
- Prison: Evidence of its use and over-use from around the world Institute for Criminal Policy Research, March, 2017“Whether you would end up in prison is also affected by who you are. For example, Roma people make up around 40% of Hungary’s prison population, despite representing only 6% of the national population.”
Thanks and stay safe out there. Terry
Terry Campbell is a criminal justice professor at Purdue University Global and has more than 20 years of experience in corrections and policing. He has served in various roles, including prison warden and parole administrator, for the Arkansas Department of Corrections. Terry may be reached at email@example.com.
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