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Juvenile and Adult Correction Facilities Management

A correction facility refers to a residential amenity aimed at restricting the movement and activities of those individuals convicted of having committed an offense. The correction facilities are essential for keeping criminals out of society and are crucial centers for rehabilitating them so that they can become safe and resourceful in society. A juvenile correction facility differs from an adult correction center in that a juvenile correction facility is a residential facility where youth offenders (people below the age of 18) are placed when convicted or while they await court hearings. An adult correction facility is only meant for adult’s offenders who are above the age of 18 (Bartollas &Sieverdes, 1983).

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The court usually sends minor offenders to a juvenile facility to guarantee the public safety and embrace their wellbeing. In this context, juveniles should be managed differently from adult criminals. It is more appropriate if the facilities are located in separate places further apart. In case they are established in the same location there should be adequate facilities and structures to accommodate and deal with young offenders’ needs separately inside the adult correction facility. This could ensure that appropriate education and rehabilitation program required for young offenders is delivered effectively.

The management of juvenile correction facilities should be separated from adult correction facilities because children have unique needs that significantly vary from those of adults. Children mainly have low fear of danger and are characterized by playful behaviors. They usually have a different perception of issues and time and they are not able to concentrate for long. They usually have volatile patterns of behaviors and sentimental states, and they are more prone to contamination from offensive influence as they interact with adults. The maturity level differs and needs between children and adult’s offenders. Therefore, their behavioral characteristic calls for a separate approach from those of adult’s offenders. The separation of managing juvenile correction facilities from adults correction facilities is also highly crucial in stopping children’s criminalization and influence that may happen because of children and adults offender’s contacts. Children have growth and developmental needs that require a separate management approach and programs from those for adults. It helps to protect the safety and the wellbeing of children.

The absence of separate management of juvenile and adults correction centres poses severe problems. Mixing both adult and young offenders in adults prison may reverse the advance and the accomplishment of the rehabilitation objectives aimed by juvenile justice, especially because their interactions and contact can promote further criminalization of young offenders. Furthermore, when children are placed in adult correction facilities, they are likely to face sexual assault and even harassment from staff members and adult prisoners. This would only create a stressful situation that can lead to the emotional risk of a child making a dangerous decision like committing suicide. Thus, underage offenders who are convicted in juvenile courts should not be put at the same correction facility as adult offenders (Bartollas &Sieverdes, 1983).

Ways of Managing Separated Adult and Juvenile Correction Facility

The key aim of the correction facilities is to punish the offenders, however, due to the growing nature and characteristics of the children, juvenile centers should emphasize more on rehabilitation other than punishment. Adult correction facility should mainly focus on punishment and offer rehabilitation initiatives meant for adults. In addition, the correction policies should recognize the unique differences between children and adults. Childrens rights and responsibilities should not be the same as those of adults. For instance, due to children’s age, they cannot vote, smoke, or be a member of the armed forces.

The practice of transferring young offenders from juvenile to adult corrective facilities should be revised and discouraged. This is because, children have a unique ability to reform and redeem since they are still growing and have not yet reached maturity age. Juvenile correction facilities should have a reformation and effective programs in place. With appropriate rehabilitation and reformation programs in place, minors who commit crimes can be reformed to become responsible adults more easily as their brains are growing and still changing flexibly. Due to the undeveloped prefrontal cortex, children are unable to control aggression, moral decision-making, long-range planning, conceptual thinking, and mental flexibility. For this reason, the treatment and management of minor offenders and adult offenders should be done in different facilities, whereby rehabilitation and reforms should be more emphasized in juvenile correction centers (American Medical Association, 1993).

Punishment has failed in behavior change, teaching new skills and ideas, and development of beliefs. Harsh punishment only amounts to an increased feeling of vengefulness, as opposed to correction facility objectives of reformation. The creation and growth of vengefulness element in a child could lead to hazardous character on the child. For this reason, harsh punishment should be discouraged in both the juvenile and adult correction facility.

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In a situation where both juvenile and adult correction centre share the same location, there should be stringent measures to prevent adult offenders from coming into contact with the minors. This is to help curb issues of further criminalization of the minor offenders, prevent unnecessary harassment by the adults in the adult facility, and ensure their efficient growth and development. In addition, there should be a separate rehabilitation program irrespective of both of them sharing the same location. The rehabilitation program of minors should focus on the growth and development of a child while embracing reformation of the children convicted in the juvenile. The rehabilitation program of adults should emphasize on reasonable punishment and rehabilitation aiming at reforming the convicted adults’ criminals and making them better individuals in the society (Flaherty, 1980).

More rehabilitation incentives should be encouraged in a juvenile facility such as programs that reduce violence incidence, higher academic achievement structures and set goals, programs that restructure effective cognition ability of the minor to make them understand thinking error that may lead them into trouble and secure facilities ensured. This is because of the growing nature of the children’s need to develop their cognitive ability and the intent to make them resourceful individuals in society when they turn adult age. The incentives of adult correction centers should focus on correcting the offenses committed by the adult criminals through reasonable punishment and developing their skills and morals to make them productive and morally upright people in the society, especially after their release (Forst, Fagan &Scott, 1989).

In conclusion, the main reason for correction facilities is to prevent, curtail and eradicate crime and uphold conducive living of society through offering those convicted as criminals help, which includes rehabilitation and educational opportunities. The adult correction facility should be managed differently from juvenile facilities to uphold children’s rights and unique needs as discussed above that differs from those of adults.

References

American Medical Association. (1993). Guidelines for adolescent preventive services. New York: Oxford University Press.

Bartollas, C. &Sieverdes, C. M. (1983). The Sexual Victim in a coeducational Juvenile Correctional Institution. The Prison Journal, 68(1).

Flaherty, M. G. (1980). An Assessment of the national incidence of juvenile suicide in dult jails, lockups, and juvenile detention centers. Urbana-Champaign, US: The University of Illinois.

Forst, M. Fagan, J., &Scott V. (1989). Youth in Prisons and Training Schools: Perceptions and Consequences of the Treatment-Custody Dichotomy. Juvenile and Family Court Journal, 59(4).

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