As the Prison System Is Overburdened, Judges Are Giving Community Service Sentences Instead of Imprisonment for Minor Non-Violent Crimes. Will This Be Good for the Society in the Long Run?

Topics: Prison, Community service, Crime Pages: 6 (2190 words) Published: March 28, 2012
As the Prison system is overburdened, judges are giving Community Service Sentences instead of imprisonment for Minor Non-Violent Crimes. Will this be good for the society in the long run?

Offences that are defined as Minor Non-Violent Offences are those that are against the law but are not usually viewed as serious enough to be taken to the court if done once or twice (Notton, 2010). An example of non violent offence is burglary or motor vehicle theft. Community Service is an alternative of imprisonment imposed by the Court for minor non violent crimes. Community service is an unpaid work for the criminal so that he can repay the debt to the society for committing the offense (An tSeirbhis Phromhaidh The Probation Service, n.d.). Community service can also be a job for which any particular individual can volunteer for. An example of a community service is cleaning up the environment. Giving community service sentences instead of imprisonment for minor non-violent crimes would be good for the society in the long run because the criminal will get a second chance in life, it will reduce the burden on the prison system and society will benefit from community service. However individuals may take advantage of the system by taking too long to complete their community service work, although people might try to take advantage, if the work is done slowly then the criminals will be severely punished.

Everybody makes mistakes, while others don’t bother to make it right, some people want a second chance at life which means that people who have done wrong, will get another chance to right themselves and to be an active member to the society. Giving them something to do will also help them see the positives of life and become better citizens to the society as a whole. It will also give them a chance to right their wrongs. This can give them an improved life and can help them carry on with it. People that commit petty crimes such as stealing or drug dealing should not be locked up for good because they deserve a second chance at life again. That’s why community service is offered. Various programs are available such as SLAP, for Sheriff's Labor Assistance Program which help out local sheriffs in small towns all over (Worth, 1998). In Savannah, GA, Randall Moutrie was caught dealing drugs and was convicted to jail. He was given the option of doing community service which he did, and he said “It made me get better and stronger in my life” (Ruberti, 2010). This shows that community service does help someone figuring out what there is to life and how they can relive it. Another example is Berlynn Cottom who was a drug and alcohol addict. Being convicted, she was given the chance to right her wrongs and attend mental and physical rehab. In the process, she would have to complete hours of community service. After the intensive program she said that it had given her a new perspective on life and that she got more respect in the community. It also helped her realize that there is more to life than just doing drugs (Ruberti, 2010). Community service can be offered to non violent crime offenders because some don’t have the money to pay for the fines. Rather than being imprisoned for small crimes, they can become active members of society by helping out the community. This can motivate them to becoming better citizens and also to have a brighter future. Other offenders could also be motivated to show an interest to daily life. With having community service, they can find something that they want to do or keep up for the rest of their lives. It can keep them busy and also to become better role models to other offenders. With having completed the community service program, “offenders can look forward to a better lifestyle by reducing the number of repeat offenders who return to jail after being unable to adapt to life outside of jail”, said Moses Wright (Wright, n.d.). Jail time not only affects the criminals individually but also affects...
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