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NCJ Number: 67167 Find in a Library
Title: PSYCHOLOGICAL ASPECTS OF PAROLE (FROM THE ROLE OF THE FORENSIC PSYCHOLOGIST, 1980, BY GERALD COOKE - SEE NCJ-67157)
Author(s): J L BECK
Corporate Author: Charles C. Thomas
United States of America
Date Published: 1980
Page Count: 9
Sponsoring Agency: Charles C. Thomas
Springfield, IL 62704
Format: Document
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: TWO PHILOSOPHIES OF PAROLE (TREATMENT AND JUSTICE MODELS) ARE EXAMINED IN TERMS OF THE EFFECT THEY HAVE ON INCARCERATED OFFENDERS' PERCEPTIONS OF THE WAY PAROLE IS DECIDED.
Abstract: OFFENDERS BEING HEARD FOR PAROLE UNDER TWO DIFFERENT PAROLE SYSTEMS, THAT OF THE UNITED STATES PAROLE COMMISSION AND THE PENNSYLVANIA BOARD OF PROBATION AND PAROLE, WERE INTERVIEWED AND ASKED TO EVALUATE THE DECISION PROCESS. THE UNITED STATES PAROLE COMMISSION IS GUIDED IN ITS PAROLE DECISIONS BY THE DOUBLE CRITERION OF THE AMOUNT OF TIME TO BE SPENT IN PRISON AND THE RISK OF RECIDIVISM. THE PENNESYLVANIA PAROLE BOARD IS MORE TREATMENT-ORIENTED; AN INMATE'S INSTITUTIONAL BEHAVIOR DETERMINES, TO A GREAT EXTENT, THE PAROLE DECISION. MEASUREMENTS OF INMATES' PERCEPTIONS OF THE TWO TYPES OF PAROLE DECISIONMAKING SYSTEMS WERE BASED ON THREE DESCRIPTIVE DIMENSIONS: CLARITY (TO THE OFFENDER), CERTAINTY (PREDICTABILITY), AND CONTROL (THE INMATE'S ABILITY TO INFLUENCE THE PAROLE DECISION). THE TWO PAROLE SYSTEMS SCORED ALMOST EQUALLY ON CLARITY AND CERTAINTY. THE THIRD DESCRIPTIVE DIMENSION (CONTROL) WAS PERCEIVED MORE FAVORABLY BY THE INMATES SURVEYED FOR THE TREATMENT-ORIENTED PAROLE PHILOSOPHY. THE MAIN REASON GIVEN BY RESPONDENTS FOR THE LOW APPROVAL RATE OF THE FEDERAL GUIDELINES WAS THEIR PERCEPTION THAT SUCH GUIDELINES ARE BASED ON WHAT AN INDIVIDUAL DID IN THE PAST, AND CANNOT BE CHANGED. ANOTHER REASON FOR NEGATIVE PERCEPTIONS OF THE FEDERAL PAROLE SYSTEM WAS THE LOW RATE (20 PERCENT VERSUS 70 PERCENT IN PENNSYLVANIA) OF PAROLES GRANTED AT THE FIRST HEARING. HOWEVER, THE JUSTICE (FEDERAL) APPROACH TO PAROLE IS STILL A USEFUL TOOL FOR REDUCING SENTENCE DISPARITY, AND THE REHABILITATION MODEL MUST ALWAYS BE SUSPECT UNTIL SOME METHOD OF REHABILITATING OFFENDERS HAS BEEN PROVED EFFECTIVE. A LIST OF 19 REFERENCES AND A TABLE ARE INCLUDED. (LGR)
Index Term(s): Federal parole guidelines; Inmate attitudes; Parole; Parole board; Pennsylvania; Probation or parole decisionmaking; Rehabilitation
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