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NCJ Number: 64008 Find in a Library
Title: PREVENTION OF SUICIDE IN CORRECTIONAL FACILITIES
Journal: MONATSSCHRIFT FUER KRIMINOLOGIE UND STRAFRECHTSREFORM  Volume:62  Issue:1  Dated:(FEBRUARY 1979)  Pages:9-25
Author(s): C SWIENTEK
Corporate Author: Carl Heymanns Verlag
Germany (Unified)
Date Published: 1979
Page Count: 17
Sponsoring Agency: Carl Heymanns Verlag
5 Cologne 1, Germany United
Type: Statistics
Format: Article
Language: German
Country: West Germany (Former)
Annotation: CHARACTERISTICS OF SUICIDAL INMATES IN WEST GERMAN PRISONS AND MEASURES FOR PREVENTION BY CORRECTIONAL FACILITIES ARE DESCRIBED FROM THE PERSPECTIVE OF AN INSTITUTIONAL SOCIAL WORKER.
Abstract: MALE INMATES IN WEST GERMAN PRISONS ARE FOUR TO SIX TIMES MORE LIKELY TO COMMIT SUICIDE THAN THEIR COUNTERPARTS OUTSIDE PRISON BECAUSE OF THE EFFECTS OF INCARCERATION (E.G., SEPARATION FROM FAMILY OR FINANCIAL PROBLEMS) AND BECAUSE OF EXPERIENCES DURING IMPRISONMENT (E.G., FAMILY DISPUTES AND DEATHS). STATISTICS ON 22 RANDOMLY SELECTED, SUICIDAL INMATES TREATED FOR A 12-MONTH PERIOD INDICATE THE PREVALENCE OF 21- TO 30-YEAR-OLD PERSONS WITH PREVIOUS RECORDS SERVING SENTENCES FOR MURDER, THEFT, OR FRAUD; MOST SUICIDE ATTEMPTS OCCUR IN THE FIRST MONTH OF INCARCERATION. INMATES-AT-RISK TEND NOT TO HAVE COMPLETED VOCATIONAL OR PROFESSIONAL TRAINING OR TO HAVE EARNED REGULAR INCOMES. THE MAJORITY ARE SINGLE AND SUFFER FROM PSYCHOSOMATIC SYMPTOMS. SUICIDAL EPISODES ARE USUALLY SET OFF BY CONFLICTS INSIDE OR OUTSIDE THE INSTITUTION. CLIENT-ORIENTED, ANALYTICAL INTERVENTION CONSISTS OF DIRECTED QUESTIONS AND THERAPY SESSIONS WITH DISCUSSION OF CURRENT PROBLEMS. INMATES ARE ENCOURAGED TO TAKE RESPONSIBILITY FOR THEIR OWN BEHAVIOR. SPECIFIC DISCUSSION TOPICS ARE SUGGESTED BUT SHOULD BE GUIDED BY THE NEEDS OF THE INMATES. SESSIONS GENERALLY LAST 50 MINUTES AND THE NUMBER OF SESSIONS DEPENDS ON THE INTEREST OF THE PRISONERS. ATTEMPTS SHOULD BE MADE TO PROMOTE CONTACTS WITH OTHER PRISONERS, TO STRUCTURE PRISONERS' TIME AND ACTIVITIES, AND TO COUNTERACT DEPRESSION, ESPECIALLY IN QUIET INMATES. OUTSIDE INTERVENTION INVOLVES CULTIVATION OF PRISONERS' FAMILIES, ENCOURAGEMENT OF FAMILY VISITS, SPECIAL COUNSELING, AND FAMILY LEGAL AND SOCIAL ASSISTANCE. OTHER MEANS OF SUICIDE PREVENTION INCLUDE THE TRAINING OF CORRECTIONAL OFFICERS AND MODIFICATION OF THE HIERARCHICAL, CLOSED PRISON STRUCTURES. SUICIDAL BEHAVIOR IS VIEWED AS A VALID METHOD OF DRAWING ATTENTION TO INDIVIDUAL PROBLEMS, BUT TO AVOID ABUSE OF THE DEVICE, ALL PRISONERS SHOULD BE ROUTINELY INTERVIEWED. SUICIDE SHOULD NOT BE ACCEPTED AS THE ONLY SOLUTION TO PRISONERS' DILEMMAS. A BIBLIOGRAPHY AND TABLES ARE SUPPLIED. --IN GERMAN (KMD)
Index Term(s): Germany; Inmate classification; Inmate Programs; Inmate statistics; Inmates; Suicide; Treatment
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http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=64008

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