Equal and meaningful access to the courts has become the established standard that has to be observed by correctional professionals and prison librarians in the United States of America. Some correction administrators believe that offenders should be deprived of their civil rights, while serving their sentences…
Citizens, who had been wrongly accused or unjustly sentenced, could challenge such actions. It was the bounden duty of the federal government to implement a system of checks-and-balances in the system so that the correction department did not infringe the fundamental liberty of citizens. This endeavor was assisted significantly by librarians who acted in an unbiased manner within the purview of the standards established by the American Association of Law Libraries. This was to ensure that the policies of institutions and departments, and authorizations from the United States Supreme Court and local jurisdictions were observed2.
In the 1977 case of Bounds v. Smiths, the right of an offender to access the judiciary was established by the US Supreme Court. Moreover, the court held that prison inmates should be provided with access to state and federal court systems. It also directed the correctional facilities to allow offenders to access law libraries and to provide legal assistance to their illiterate inmates, so that they could avail themselves of professional assistance while preparing their pleadings. The objective of this decision was to enable prisoners to access the court systems. However this ruling created a lot of consternation amongst the correctional personnel, librarians and library science professionals as it required them to implement new strategies in order to provide prison inmates with access to the appropriate legal documents3.
The applicants in Casey v Lewis were prison officials of the Arizona DOC. The DOC had argued that the US District Court of Arizona had been mistaken in deciding that the department had breached Bounds. It also claimed that the court's order deprived the lawful remedies of the department. The respondents in the case were twenty - two inmates imprisoned in various correctional facilities of the DOC4.
The respondents collectively filed a class - suit on behalf of all offenders who had been imprisoned and also on behalf of future offenders. In their application they have accused the DOC of depriving them of the right to access the courts and counsel. These provisions had been assured by the First, Sixth and Fourteenth Constitutional amendments. The district court held that the prisoners had a constitutional right of access to the courts and that such access was to be adequate and effective5.
Moreover, the court held that the DOC had failed to act in accordance with constitutional standards. The court also found that the DOC was not in a position to meet the offenders' needs in areas such as providing the inmates with appropriate training so as to utilize the library. It also held that the library had failed to obtain updated legal materials and that it had not provided prisoners with photocopying facilities6.
Moreover, the court observed that prisoners belonged to two groups and that these offenders had not been provided with adequate services. The first group was composed of offenders on a lockdown status or in other words it was composed of offenders who had been deprived of the bodily right of entry to the law library. Such offenders were on occasion denied access to the courts. The second group consisted of offenders who either could not speak English or who were illiterate7.
The court accepted the ...
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(“American Prison Law Essay Example | Topics and Well Written Essays - 8250 words”, n.d.)
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(American Prison Law Essay Example | Topics and Well Written Essays - 8250 Words)
“American Prison Law Essay Example | Topics and Well Written Essays - 8250 Words”, n.d. https://studentshare.net/miscellaneous/296402-american-prison-law.
They reflect the inmates’ hostile feelings and approach towards the men of the independent world. The methodologies used were case studies, autobiographies of the prisoners, and essays written after interviews of the inmates. Observations recorded the importance of different problems inside the prison society.
American prison system. The American prison system History. While United States of America has the largest corrections system in the world, the history of its prisons and jails goes back to the British prison system. However, the corporal punishment was largely absent in the old correction system and “bridewells”, as prisons in UK were called during 18th century.
As the offences and punishments are on the increase from year to year, the authorities have to allocate more funds to meet the increased expenses and mounting problems of prisoners. Prisons in the present day face a number of problems of which overcrowding has become a serious issue.
Young offenders usually are detained in separate institutions, often designated under names that imply that their purpose is treatment or correction rather than punishment. Women are normally held in separate institutions. Prisoners who are not considered a danger to the community may be confined in low-security or open prisons.
However, the truth about life in US prisons surpasses the fantasy perpetuated by the media. Because of public hesitation to spend more on taxes or spend more for the improvement of the American penal institutions to house criminals in a more 'dignified' facility, inmates usually get limited training, treatment, education and other opportunities for rehabilitation (Maguire 1999).
Most prison gang members are from a poorer class. Gender is also a factor in prison gangs. Men are more likely to form gangs in prison than their women counterparts. While women are active gang members outside prison walls, the formation of
This case study brought to the fore the manipulative and selfish methods used by politicians to persuade matters in their favor. When the state capitol of Boise was selected as a potential site for the new prison, state legislative delegation from Pocatello reminded Boise’s Governor, Cecil Andrus about his dependence on Pocatello for votes and support.
It is universally known that offenders are put into prison to deter them from more criminal activities. Other arguments state that prisoners, after getting released from prison, are often prone towards
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