By: James Thomas
University of Phoenix
Prison environment is cramped and confined and a dangerous environment. There are many inmate customs, etiquette or rules to abide by, or a convicted individual may be subjected to physical harm or death. The most obvious characteristic of the prison environment is the absence of privacy. The absence of privacy is a deliberate punishment, lavatories are within the individual cells are within three feet of the individual’s cellmate. It is difficult if not impossible for an inmate to be completely alone during incarceration; there are only three places an inmate can be at any time, his or her cell, the common housing area, or on the yard (Foster, 2006). There are many cliques in the prison environment generally separated by race or gang affiliation. These cliques influence the institutional management and custody in a variety of ways. General management and daily interaction of inmates must be respectful and sensitive to the race factor. Strategies were developed to combat prison gangs, these strategies include; segregation, isolation of gang leaders, jacketing or labeling and categorizing gang members for intelligence purposes, deprogramming, and placement of gang members in high-security prisons. Special corrections officer response teams were formed to manage inmates. These teams are known as Special Operations Response Team or SORT teams (Foster, 2006). Changes to improve institutional management in my opinion cannot simply be suggested at the institutional level, I believe changes must occur at all levels of the correctional system. “Facing at least the possibility of the entire prison system being placed under court control because of chronic overcrowding, panicked state politicians—urged on by Governor Schwarzenegger in October, 2007 approved a $7.3 billion emergency measure, known as AB 900,...