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NCJ Number: 171226 Find in a Library
Title: Public Opinion: Sometimes You're the Windshield, Sometimes You're the Bug
Journal: Corrections Management Quarterly  Volume:1  Issue:3  Dated:(Summer 1997)  Pages:10-14
Author(s): R A Wilkinson; T J Strickrath
Date Published: 1997
Page Count: 5
Type: Issue Overview
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: The Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction has sought to tailor its policies to reflect public opinion while staying true to programs it believes to be ultimately good for public protection and the positive socialization of inmates in prison and in the community after release.
Abstract: Reflecting public acceptance of community corrections for nonviolent offenders, Ohio has diverted over 31,000 offenders from State prison and into community corrections sanctions since 1991. This is an effort to divert nonviolent offenders from costly imprisonment while reserving prison space for violent offenders. On another issue occasioned by public antagonism toward perceived inmate "perks," including weightlifting, the department held its ground in support of such valuable inmate management tools. The department compromised, however, in not giving inmates in maximum-security institutions access to any bodybuilding equipment. Inmates in medium-security and minimum- security prisons have access to only fixed-weight equipment. In reaction to public opinion against using public funds to provide college degree programs for inmates while some citizens could not afford to send their children to college, the department eliminated degree programs for inmates while contracting with Ohio universities to provide "continuing education" to inmates. The program avoids the use of public grants slated for traditional students. In emphasizing vocational training programs for inmates, the depart facilitates the hiring of ex-offenders upon release. The reputation of prison programs is enhanced and society benefits from the establishment of linkages between Ohio's businesses and employable ex-offenders. The department has been proactive in revising its classification system, has developed a community service program, and has taken a number of actions to support victims' rights, including opening parole hearings to victims. 5 references
Main Term(s): Corrections policies
Index Term(s): Community service programs; Community-based corrections (adult); Inmate Education Assistance Programs; Inmate vocational training; Ohio; Public Opinion of Corrections
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