A dirty prison cell, which could arguably be considered cruel and unusual punishment for prisoners. Picture taken from mirror.co.uk.
Do Inmates Have More Rights Than We Think?
Story by: Michael Mosier
Inmates all across the country have multiple rights such as the right to hot meals every day and the right to shelter. This could be deemed common sense. They also have their Miranda Rights read to them upon being arrested. But, do prisoners have more rights that what we believe? The answer may be yes.
According to HG.org, prisoners of every degree have the right to complain about prison conditions (HG.org). On top of being able to complain about their living conditions, they are also able to share their concerns with the courts in order to attempt to change their living conditions to suit their personal needs. For example, as depicted in the image above, the inmate(s) living in cells similar to this one are legally able to complain about the nasty cot in the dirty room. First, they must complain to the workers inside the prison they are in. If the prison workers do not comply, the prisons have the right to go above them and bring their concern to the court system in order to make their living environment more laundered. The complaints can range from a prisoner’s personal cell to a dirty cafeteria or even a vile public restroom (available in low security prisons).
Cruel and Unusual Punishment
Going hand in hand with suitable living conditions is the fact that prisoners have safety from cruel and unusual punishment. The abstinence of cruel and unusual punishment for prisoners is derived from the Eighth Amendment of the United States Constitution. According to the Law department at Cornell University, the Eighth Amendment gives individuals (including prisoners) the freedom from the death penalty (in most cases) and excessive fines (law.cornell.edu). Cruel and unusual punishment can range from disemboweling, beheading, burning, or...
THE PROBLEM AND ITS BACKGROUND
Threading through the history of civilization, the pursuit for punishment of lawbreakers was almost as bloody as the crime committed. Punishment then was prompt and pitiless. Although there were penitentiaries in the annals of early correctional system, its characteristics just redo the barbaric practices of treating erring individuals.
In this contemporary society when an authority places a person behind bars, it has acknowledged a moral obligation to change that person before he or she goes back to mainstream of society. Social scientist now believed that it is not right for the society to punish criminals without helping them to become productive and law-abiding citizens, otherwise, they may have no choice but to turn to crime again.
Modern day penologists envisage that jails and prisons are not anymore place for punishment but a venue for corrections, nor mere walled quadra but quads for rehabilitation. For them, prison today are like hospital, where socially ill patients are diagnosed and administered. The new concept of rehabilitation is being introduced through various rehabilitative programs purposely to change the behavior of prisoners in order to protect the society in general and to help them in particular.
Historically, the public turned its attention to prisons only in times of crisis, when news tends to focus on issues of the moment, without reference to everyday realities of...
University of Phoenix
CJA204/Introduction to Criminal Justice
April 20, 2011
Prisoner rights operate under the understanding that although a prisoner will be deprived of his or her freedom he or she will still be entitled to basic human rights, and these rights must not be infringed upon. Prisoner rights are an important set of checks and balances to help avoid illegal activity and regulate the actions of the corrections department in the criminal justice system. Even though these individuals have committed a crime, he or she is still a person and remains protected for certain basic rights guaranteed to him or her under the United States Constitution.
Awarding individual rights to violators of the law created concern for public order advocates. In 1974, the courts developed a principle known as a balance test. A balance test is,
A principle, developed by the courts and applied to the corrections arena by Pell v. Procunier (1974), that [sic] attempts to weigh the rights of an individual, as guaranteed by the Constitution, against the authority of states to make laws or to otherwise restrict a person’s freedom in order to protect the state’s interests and its citizens. (Schmalleger, 2009, p. 521)
With the balance test in mind, there are a few essential...
...• • • •
16 September 2010
STANDARD OPERATING PROCEDURES
NUMBER 2010 - 04
ADMISSION AND RELEASING OF INMATES
United Nations Standard Minimum Rules for the Treatment of Prisoners;
1987 Philippine Constitution;
BJMP Manual Revised 2007;
Inputs of meetings: A Call for Action... .working Group on the Criminal Justice
System facilitated by the JCRC; and
S. Memorandum to all Regional Directors dated 04 August 2010 reo Feedback and
The Guiding Principles of the United Nations Standard Minimum Rules for the
Treatment of Prisoners states, among others, that "Imprisonment and other
measures which result in cutting off an offender from the outside world are
afflictive by the very fact of taking from a person the right of self-determination by
depriving him/her of his/her liberty. Therefore, the prison system shall not, except
as incidental to justifiable segregation or the maintenance of discipline, aggravate
the suffering inherent in such a situation". Hence, a well-planned and organized
reception and release of detainees is critical to achieving this.
Relatedty, the Bureau, in its quest for humane safekeeping and development of
inmates, needs to institutionalize a feedback and referral mechanism in which
stakeholders are notified of the status of the inmate under its custody and thereby
make appropriate action, if...
December 1, 2012
The Rights that Inmates Possess
Upon entering prison, inmates will lose most of their right as a free citizen. Although most of our rights afforded to us are a result of how we live our lives here in the United States, some of our rights still are maintained within the prison walls. These rights are listed within the First, Fourth, Eighth, and Fourteenth Amendment. The First amendment states we have the right to freedom of speech, press, and religion. The Fourth amendment states we have the right from unlawful searches and seizures. The eighth amendment protects us from cruel and unusual punishment. The Fourteenth amendment states that no state shall impose a law that imposes on the rights listed in the Bill of Rights as well as due process. And though all prisoners maintain these rights, the protection and security of those within the prison system supersede these rights. There have been many cases that have been heard as high up as the Supreme Court, involving violation of a prisoner’s rights. The most prominent cases tend to do with religious interference.
David Griffin, an inmate serving a sentence of imprisonment in the State correctional system, was transferred to the Shawangunk Correctional Facility,...
May 1, 2011
CJS/230, Dr. Kay Carter
Prisoner rights are important because they prevent prisons from taking advantage of people. They also help to ensure that the punishment fits the crime. Without prisoner rights, those who are responsible for ensuring that society is safe from people who cannot live by society’s rules would be free to treat prisoners whatever way they saw fit, and abuse would be commonplace.
Even though prisoners lose a lot of their citizen’s rights when they are convicted, they still have certain rights that make sure that they are treated fairly. Some of those rights include freedom of speech and religion, freedom from arbitrary punishment and cruel and unusual punishment, and the right to have access to the courts through Habeas Corpus. These rights are guaranteed so that prisoners are not treated unfairly, or even in an inhumane fashion. If these rights were not guaranteed to prisoners, abuse and neglect would be rampant and violence would be worse than it is now.
The prisoners’ rights movement has had its effects on the individual prisoner. They now have more access to the courts and benefit from internal procedures which help to resolve disputes within the prison. Because of the prisoners’ rights movement, individual inmates now...
...Law Prisoner Rights
Of all forms of punishment, the death penalty is by far the most controversial and also the most rarely used. Capital punishment was once almost the only penalty applied to convicted felons. By the time of the American Revolution, the English courts had defined more than 200 felonies, all of which were “capital offenses”. However, many death penalties were not carried out; instead, offenders were pardoned or banished to penal colonies. Over time, courts and legislatures began to recognize other forms of punishment, such as imprisonment and probation.
In the times of the American colonies, capital punishment was used extensively in England and in the early American colonies, as many crimes other than murder resulted in a penalty of death. Corporal punishments, often very brutal, also often resulted in death as the imposition of such torture severely injured the offender. Both torture and executions were often carried out in public, as a deterrent to others. The idea was that if others saw what the punishment was for such a crime, that perhaps the said crime would be prevented from happening altogether. Public executions, however, were ceased in 1936 when several thousand people witnessed the execution by hanging of a black man convicted of raping and murdering a white woman in Kentucky.
Prisoner rights are based on a general principle that each prisoner will be deprived of liberty, but will still be entitled to...
ENG 111 Shores
Using Death Row Inmates For Medical Research
Due to animal testing, one animal dies in a laboratory in the United States every second, in Japan every two seconds and in the United Kingdom every twelve seconds. Billions of non-human animals have been burnt, crushed, sliced, electrocuted, poisoned with toxic chemicals, and psychologically tormented because of medical research. Alternatives for these experiments have shown to be less expensive and can be used repeatedly. We are in desperate need of reliable medical research. Why not experiment and receive more accurate finding for our medical needs? Why not use people who didn’t think twice about giving up their so-called human-rights when they committed such heinous crimes towards our society? Inmates on Death Row should be involved in a selfless and valued service with a purpose beyond being taxpayer burdens.
Animals are said to have a different distribution of fine blood vessels and their skin does not react in the same way to the tests as that of a human. Although humans and animals are particularly similar throughout the central nervous system, other systems such as the cardiovascular system may differ greatly. For instance, lethal dosage (LD) tests used for cosmetic testing do not measure human health hazards, but only determine how toxic the product is to the type of animal it was tested on. The drug, Fialuridine, does not harm...
... Ashleigh Chávez
U.S. History H
June 4, 2012
Strongly influenced by occurring civil right movements gays began their own movement. The Stonewall Riot was the first major revolt in which gays fought back against those who oppressed them and it helped push forward the Gay liberation movement. There had previously been many violent events previous to stonewall that involve gay bashing and cruel treatment of gays. One night at the Stonewall Inn, what seemed to be normal night, turned out to be a major event in Gay Liberation history. The next couple weeks after the Stonewall incident, gays began to move forward and push for equal treatment. The Stonewall raid is a turning point in gay liberation history in which gays made their first move.
The sixties were a different times for gays. The law was regularly against them. Due to the law being against them, the police were constantly bashing gays in legal ways (Gay Liberation). Constantly being ridiculed and offended by the cruel remarks like "faggot", "queer", "homosexual", "sexual deviate" just because they were homosexual. Since this was a communal way of treating gays, Mike Wallace said, “Two out of three Americans look at homosexuals with disgust, discomfort, or fear.” (Gay Pride) Gays couldn’t find safe places to meet without fear of being arrested and when in public they had to hide who they were. Because they couldn’t meet in public places without being arrested, they often met in...