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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 156862 Find in a Library
Title: History of Recent Corrections Is a History of Court Involvement
Journal: Corrections Today  Volume:57  Issue:5  Dated:(August 1995)  Pages:112,114,116,150
Author(s): W C Collins
Date Published: 1995
Page Count: 4
Type: Historical Overview
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: Judicial oversight of the operation of prisons and jails has produced more positive change in corrections than any other development during the past 30 years.
Abstract: The Federal courts have forced accountability on the persons and institutions who have the responsibility of holding offenders accountable. Both before and after judicial oversight, inmates have been confined in filthy conditions, worked unsupervised in a prison medical department, been segregated by race, and supervised by inmate trusties with firearms. Although some decry excessive judicial involvement in prison administration, it is clear that conditions would not have changed otherwise. Recent examples of public attitudes toward offenders reveal that the public cares little about what happens to offenders. Litigation has been the only means of raising awareness of past and current abuses. Removing judicial oversight, combined with the public's increasingly hostile attitudes toward offenders, could ensure that history repeats itself in ways that correctional professionals will find abhorrent. Photograph and 12 references
Main Term(s): Corrections management; History of corrections
Index Term(s): Court ordered institutional reform; Facility conditions; Judicial decision compliance; Prisoner's rights
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