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ESSAY: Ethics in the correctional facility

Length and Style: 1,250 to 1,500 words, excluding the reference page, any charts, graphs, etc.
You’ll want to write at least part of the paper in the first person (“I”). Be sure to write in short,
crisp sentences and put your bottom line or main message at the beginning of the paper. Good
organization, including short paragraphs and subheadings, helps. Consider a style similar to a
well-written newspaper “op-ed” (with added in-text citations). Note that I’m looking for your
viewpoint (backed by evidence), not a typical academic paper on your chosen topic.
References: At least 6 authoritative references, all referred to within your paper and in a final
reference page. No more than two of those sources should be those we’ve used in class.
Format: Single or double spacing is fine. Please use APA format for in-text citations and the
reference page. If in doubt about whether to cite the source for any content in your paper, be
sure to cite the source.
Grading: An “A” paper will follow the guidelines above, reference a number of authoritative
concepts and readings, be handed in on time, and be a well-written, well-researched, and
original presentation of ideas about your topic.


Ethics in the Correctional Facility

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In December of 2018, while on transit to visit a friend, I stumbled upon an article from the Guardian Weekly. The article presented the statistical facts detailing the US prison population for the last forty years and the number of deaths that had occurred in correctional facilities (The Guardian Weekly). It reported that in 40 years, the number of Americans dying while in correctional facilities and the US prison population has increased by close to 500%! The article went ahead to give an example of a 28-year-old Sandra Bland who on failing to use her turn signal and hence send to jail, was found dead in the prison facility. What was shocking was the cover-up that state agents were trying to undertake by declaring the death as self-suicide. Questions that lingered in my mind (just as I suppose in anyone else’s) is why a minor offense could lead to one being taken to police custody. Furthermore, are correctional facilities safe as they are supposed to be? And what is it that the average American citizen doesn’t know about these facilities?

The conversation with an old man; a retired correctional officer

I was lost in thought. With the article in hand, I turned to my left where there was an old man. I sparked a conversation about the topic and specifically what goes on in correctional facilities. The old man looked composed but eager to tell me stories about such facilities. I wanted to know: aren’t there rules to guide service delivery at correctional facilities? And if the answer is yes, aren’t they followed? And who is responsible for such rules anyway? Should correctional facilities be declared enemies of the people seeking services from them?

The old man kept quiet for a while. He lifted his eyes and with a freaky tone he told me he is a retired prison officer, which is one of the most respected correctional facilities in the US. Being retired, he also has had an interest in reading scholarly work related to the topic of discussion.  It is at this point that he explained to me about ethics in correctional facilities. In the 35 years of his service to the Nation as a prison officer, Mr. Smith as he introduced to me later, had to contend with many ethical dilemmas that are common across all correctional facilities. His argument is, there is no magic in one maintaining ethical standards while administering justice at such facilities. In any case, in the course of training, officers are taught how to adhere to the different ethical codes within such facilities. He also explained that from the interactions he made with inmates while still an officer, it was rather obvious that most people send in such facilities feel they are never treated as desired. Their ignorance, however, makes them feel all is well. I was anxious to learn more from him but we had to alight and part in different ways.

What is the role of a correctional facility? In the last one year since this day, I have had an interest in ethics in correctional facilities. I have therefore done extensive research, conducted several interviews and followed service delivery in some of the respected correctional facilities, and I am here to present facts on this issue. Perhaps it will be proper to kickstart the topic by evaluating the role of a correctional facility. According to Azemi, (2019), the main purpose of a correctional facility is to undertake retribution (punishment for crimes done against…

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