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BY ELEANOR HAIDONWHAT IS PRISON? When a person is found guilty of breaking the law by a court, they are sentenced to a punishment. The sentence could be to pay a fine but when the crime is very serious, the court often sends the person to prison as their sentence. The individual may be sentenced to spend weeks, months or even years living in the prison. They will not be at home with their friends or family and will not be able to leave until their sentence is finished. WHY IS PRISON CHOSEN INSTEAD OF ANOTHER SENTENCE? Prison is often seen as the correct punishment for serious crimes. Different countries and different people believe that prison is the correct punishment and sentence for different reasons. The following list explains some of them, see which one or ones you agree with, there is no right answer. If you disagree with any, why do you disagree? 1. Protection: By sending a person to prison they are kept away from the public. They cannot harm the public or steal from them, as they are kept in a secure building. 2. Deterrence: It is not pleasant to be in prison. Friends and family can visit at certain times but the person in prison will not be able to go outside the boundary of the prison. It is hoped that anyone who is thinking of committing a crime will be put off from doing so because, either: • They have been to prison before and do not want to go back, or; • Because they know that it is a punishment that the court could order as they have heard of other people being sent to prison and they do not want that for themselves. Prison is seen as so horrible that it stops people from breaking the law as they do not want to go to prison. 3. Retribution: The law aims to keep a community safe; it provides the rule book that must be followed. When the law is broken, some people believe that the punishment should reflect the blameworthiness of the person. The sentence should not be too harsh or not too soft but reflect the crime.When someone has committed a serious crime, some argue the punishment that reflects the seriousness is prison. Can you think of any other reasons why people may think it is the right sentence to send someone to prison?
WHAT IS PRISON? When a person is found guilty of breaking the law by…Read more