Max Gemma, and others like him, are working to develop programs that provide support to prisoners and ex-offenders. Such re-entry programs can help with reintegration back into society. Achieving this makes re-offending much less likely.
The Criminal Justice System Doesn’t Prevent Future Crimes
The criminal justice system is aimed at identifying, catching, and punishing unlawful individuals. Yet, another key part of this system is the prevention of future crimes. Research indicates that many of the people currently in prison are re-offenders. These statistics highlight clear weaknesses with current practices.
Recidivism is a complex issue that linked to both the person and their environment. Many people, including Max Gemma, believe that re-offending is due to a lack of support for prisoners both during and after incarceration.
Max Gemma: Ex-Offenders Face Many Difficulties
Upon leaving prison, ex-offenders face many difficulties. One of these is employment. Compared to the general population, it is much harder for them to secure a job. Employers tend to be more cautious about hiring people with a criminal record. It is also often the case that many offenders only had access to a limited amount of education, training, and work experience before their incarceration. Issues with getting a job subsequently make it difficult to find suitable accommodation. Without a family to support them, ex-offenders are at a higher risk of homelessness. These are the kinds of problems that are generally found to be at the root of re-offending.
Rehabilitation programs are designed explicitly to overcome such problems. They provide relevant training for prisoners during their incarceration. This training helps them to develop work-related skills to help them secure a job in the future. Ex-offenders, according to Max Gemma, receive further support after their release on applying, interviewing, and obtaining employment.
Such training and support have been shown to be an important factor in overcoming the issue of re-offending. Once an individual is gainfully employed, they can secure housing and more easily become self-sufficient and productive members of society.
However, this type of program is not likely to be beneficial to all. Drug offenders, who are among the most likely to repeat their previous crimes, usually have more complex issues to deal with. In a traditional prison setting, they do not generally receive any kind of treatment for their addiction. This means that when they are released, they often find themselves in a similar situation as before their incarceration.