Prison System Reforms in The UK
The Coalition government in the UK has recently proposed that sentences for prisoners who plead “guilty” are reduced, and that some prisoners already locked up, including serious offenders and those who are guilty of sex crimes, have their sentences also reduced.
It was comforting to note today that the government has decided to make a u-turn on this proposal, and that David Cameron is now proposing the issuing of stronger sentences for serious offenses, including more life sentences.
This is in response to media claims that the government is handing out what they call “soft justice”, and indeed the majority of people in the UK are in favor of criminals properly paying for their crimes.
The reasons for trying to reduce the number of inmates in prison in the UK are clear however. Firstly, keeping offenders in prison is a very costly business, and secondly the government are trying to cut back on spending in order to get the British economy back in shape and out of debt.
By reducing prison sentences we can be assured that the cost of looking after these criminals will be reduced. However, by having those who are very likely to commit serious crimes in the future back on the street, the public would feel less secure, and at the end of the day the cost of dealing with further crimes, especially capital ones, is likely to far outweigh the cost of keeping these offenders locked up.
I believe the public will feel safer knowing that the government has reversed it’s proposal, even at the cost of the government having to make more cuts elsewhere, and therefore applaud their change of direction.