Ahem.. Ken Clarke, Prison does work in some respects

I have to say that the issue of prisons is one issue which divides myself and my podcasting partner on The Seven Days Show, Mr Iain Dale. I am very much of the mind that in its most simplistic form, prison works. When inmates are locked up there is no opportunity to commit crime.

Aha – but thats not the only purpose of prison people say. Maybe not, but for me it comes above rehabilitation, no matter how important that may be.

Critics of prison say that recidivism shows it doesn’t work? Yet what they don’t really talk about is that there is recidivism with community sentences too. So the recidivism argument really shouldn’t be used as an argument against prison, when the alternatives can be just as bad.

Then there is the deterrent argument. Some (such as Jonathan Aitken today) suggest prison won’t act as a deterrent. Err OK….. One answer is to make it so. The second argument is that if taken away someone liberty is no deterrent, a community sentence certainly isn’t.

Then there is the pledge on knife crime which has been abandoned. Sorry, but it will only be a matter of time when someone who would have had a custodial sentence who will commit some sort of crime with a knife that involves the loss of life and we can all imagine the headlines.

I’m with Michael Howard on this one. For the law abiding majority in this country, in many respects, prison works.

2 Responses to Ahem.. Ken Clarke, Prison does work in some respects

  1. mad albert says:

    criminals do commit crime whilst in prison, a lot of crime. The basic premis of “prison works”, then, is flawed.

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