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NCJ Number: 68185 Find in a Library
Title: CORRECTIONAL ASPECTS OF SOCIAL DEFENSE IN PANAMA - POSSIBLE AVENUES TO REFORM
Journal: CUADERNOS PANAMENOS DE CRIMINOLOGIA  Dated:(NOVEMBER 1972)  Pages:54-85
Author(s): M A GONZALEZ BERENDIQUE
Date Published: 1972
Page Count: 32
Format: Article
Language: Spanish
Country: Panama
Annotation: THIS STUDY DISCUSSES THE UNIQUELY FAVORABLE SITUATION OF PANAMA FOR PLANNING AND IMPLEMENTING A FAR-REACHING CORRECTIONAL REFORM BASED ON PROGRESSIVE PENAL PHILOSOPHIES AND CRIMINOLOGICAL THEORIES.
Abstract: THE CRIMINOGENIC EFFECTS OF SOCIOECONOMIC CHANGES ARE EVIDENT IN PANAMA, WHERE CRIME APPEARS TO BE ON THE INCREASE, DESPITE (OR BECAUSE OF) THE COUNTRY'S NEW PROSPERITY. THE RELATIVELY LOW NUMBER OF PRISON INMATES IN PANAMA APPEARS TO OFFER A CONTEXT FOR PROMISING CORRECTIONAL REFORMS. THE STAGGERING ECONOMIC AND SOCIAL COSTS OF CRIME SUGGEST THAT ALL POSSIBLE AVENUES FOR CONTROLLING AND REDUCING ITS INCIDENCE, ESPECIALLY THROUGH PREVENTION PROGRAMS, MUST BE EXPLORED. THE REALITIES OF THE PANAMANIAN SITUATION INCLUDE THE SURVIVAL OF TRADITIONAL AND OBSOLETE CRIMINOLOGICAL AND PENOLOGICAL POLICIES WHICH MUST BE CHANGED IN ORDER TO IMPROVE THE DELIVERY OF CRIMINAL JUSTICE AS A WHOLE. AUXILIARY TECHNICAL BUREAUS (CRIMINALISTICS AND FORENSIC MEDICINE DEPARTMENTS) SHOULD BE CREATED. THE PANAMANIAN CORRECTIONAL SYSTEM IS CURRENTLY PLAGUED WITH SHORTAGES IN PERSONNEL AND INADEQUATE FACILITIES, IN ADDITION TO THE LACK OF INMATE TREATMENT POLICIES, LACK OF POSTRELEASE ASSISTANCE PROGRAMS, AND LACK OF VIABLE ALTERNATIVES TO INSTITUTIONALIZATION. THIS STUDY GIVES THE BROAD OUTLINES OF THE PANAMANIAN PENAL SYSTEM IN ITS VARIOUS ASPECTS (RELEVANT PROVISIONS OF THE PENAL CODES, THE CORRECTIONAL SYSTEM AS A WHOLE, HUMAN RESOURCES, CREATION OF NEW SERVICES AND OF AN ADVISORY COUNCIL ON CRIME PREVENTION PROGRAMS). AMONG THE STUDY'S RECOMMENDATIONS FOR IMMEDIATE ACTION ARE THE MODERNIZATION OF THE PENAL CODE; USE OF PROBATION; AND CREATION OF A SOCIAL DEFEFNSE COUNCIL, A TECHNICAL CORRECTIONS COUNCIL, A CLINICAL CRIMINOLOGY SECTION IN THE CORRECTIONS DEPARTMENT, AND A CORRECTIONAL TREATMENT SUBSECTION. FURTHER SUGGESTIONS INCLUDE ESTABLISHING A POSTRELEASE AND ALTERNATIVE TREATMENT SECTION; BEGINNING SPECIALIZED TRAINING OF CORRECTIONAL PERSONNEL; CREATING A MINIMUM-SECURITY CORRECTIONAL INSTITUTION; REDUCING OVERCROWDING IN THE EXISTING PANAMANIAN CORRECTIONAL INSTITUTIONS, AND CREATING MEDIUM-SECURITY FACILITIES. FOOTNOTES ARE PROVIDED. --IN SPANISH.
Index Term(s): Correctional reform; Panama
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http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=68185

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