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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 78489 Find in a Library
Title: Dispute Resolution in Corrections (From Prisoners' Rights Sourcebook, P 139-152, 1980, Ira P Robbins, ed. - See NCJ-78483)
Author(s): A F Breed; D D Dillingham
Date Published: 1980
Page Count: 14
Sponsoring Agency: Clark Boardman Company, Ltd
New York, NY 10014
Sale Source: Clark Boardman Company, Ltd
435 Hudson Street
New York, NY 10014
United States of America
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This chapter from a sourcebook on prisoners' rights examines the major methods used by correctional institution administrators in addressing inmate complaints.
Abstract: Inmates in American prison began demanding their right to be heard in the 1960's. At this time, courts became more willing to act where correctional practices appeared to be in conflict with constitutional rights. Formal mechanisms for dealing with inmate complaints generally fall into three broad categories: ombudsman programs, inmate councils, and multilevel grievance procedures. The ombudsman system, which originated in the Scandinavian countries, is based on the appointment of an individual to handle complaints inmates have with the institution. Inmate councils involve an elected body of inmates who work to resolve problems through regular meetings with administrators. The more traditional approach to dealing with inmate complaints is the multilevel grievance procedure system. Regardless of the model followed, experience indicates that six principles must be adhered to for the mechanism to work. These six include a written response to all complaints, reasonable time limits for responses, outside review, participation of inmates and line staff, easy access with guarantees against reprisal, and broad jurisdiction. All satisfactory grievance mechanisms incorporate the concepts of participation, fairness, and justice. The chapter provides 16 reference notes.
Index Term(s): Correctional reform; Inmate discipline; Inmate grievances; Inmate staff relations; Ombudsmen; Prisoner's rights
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