Every day we hear from newspapers that some person or other has been convicted for a crime and is sentenced to some period of time in jail. And, of course, we get furious when the judical system fails to protect the innocent victims. Especially if minimal sentences were given to criminals for horrendous crimes...
However, is jail really the answer?
Criminals should be punished without a doubt, but will sending more and more young people to jail solve the problem? Or... should we focus on the actual crime prevention more? I think that we are simplifying the problem by doing this. We should ask ourselves:
- Why are young people offending?
- Is the family to blame?
- Or is it that society's failing them?
- What is the Goverment's place and role in this problem?
- What kind of help can we offer?
The reality is that the whole society is responsible and should work together to prevent young lives ending in jails or, even worse, in coffins.
We need to remember though that PRISON doesn't SOLVE crime, in fact it's likely to generate it.
Because according to PsycologyToday, "if you land in prison, you will turn into an even more corrupt or violent person when you leave". It also states that imprisoning offenders makes them worse, as they learn more things from the other people also there, the "tricks of the trade".
If they have family's and authorities support, a role model/s, the right policies and rehabilitation opportunities, youth crime prevention programs, training for job opportunities and if they're standing in the right crowd, then they'll have a better chance to be decent citizens of their community.
The problem is OURS and we have to solve it; there's no point in turning our heads the other way.