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Does The Canadian System Of Punishment Meet The Needs Of Society?

1429 words - 6 pages

Law Summative Essay |
Does the Canadian System of punishment meet the needs of society? |
Vincent Ng |
5/4/2012 |


The Canadian system of punishment does not meet the needs of society. Our justice system is sentencing criminals very few years in prison for outrageous crimes. Criminals who are sent to prison are actually getting more violent because of the conditions of those prisons. In addition, society gets very upset when sexual offenders are given anonymity or when the most dangerous inmates are given the chance of parole.

The Canadian system of punishment is typically going to court and if determined guilty by the court, a ...view middle of the document...

Even though Zimmerman has had a previous record of the same type of crime, he was only sentenced to 3 years and 4 months in prison, which was even less than his first sentence just because he pleaded guilty. After that, he was released for parole once again, and breached it. The Canadian system of punishment is “an irrational, nonsensical system” (Cowie). It is obvious that the system of punishment is not working properly and it needs to understand which individuals actually need a longer sentence to reflect the severity of their crimes.

The conditions of prisons are just so terrible that criminals are actually getting more violent because of it. Because there is not enough space in the prisons, inmates are attacking each other in their cells (Curry). There are no consequences for these inmates and even the guards are scared because of how outnumbered they are. Criminals inside prisons are not being punished for their actions of violence. “Prison guards are scrambling to manage what is said to be the heightened risk to their safety – and the safety of convicts – as a result of higher inmate populations.” (Curry). Society actually wants criminals to be rehabilitated, but it is just not happening because nearly half of all released prisoners are likely to reoffend (The Observer). For the prison system to work effectively with those who need to be incarcerated, the prison service must be freed from the disastrous burden of those who could be dealt with effectively and far less expensively in the community (Graef). We simply cannot be sending everyone who has broken the law into prison because they end up becoming worse than they have been before. For first time drug offenders or people with mental illnesses, they should be segregated into true rehabilitation centers, separate from prisons because they are far too vulnerable. (Hillman). Some people who shouldn’t be sent to prison are youths of society who have committed crimes. “Of course, some youths do need to be placed in custody, either for the protection of society, or for their own welfare (or both.) Yet according to University of Toronto criminologist Anthony Doob and University of Guelph sociologist Jane Sprott, the youths most likely to go to jail under the YOA weren't the ones who needed to be there” (Vancouver Sun). With the prison system so flawed, it leads to the Canadian system of punishment being flawed as well because of how tightly they are linked together.

Lastly, the Canadian system of punishment does not meet the needs of society because of how enraged society gets when they find out sexual offenders are given anonymity or when the most dangerous inmates are given the chance of parole (Kierkegaard). No community wants a sex offender to be living within their community, and certainly, they do not deserve to be released on parole. Punishment leads to segregation and society believes that sex offenders should be segregated based on how high the risk of them reoffending is...

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