Time spent in prison can deter offenders from future crimes or rehabilitate offenders by providing vocational training or wellness programs. However, incarceration can also lead to recidivism and unemployment due to depreciation of human capital, exposure to hardened criminals, or social and labor stigma. Opinions on crime and punishment differ. However, almost everyone would agree that we care about crime because of the damage it causes.
It is not necessary to have any particular ideological inclination to advocate an approach that reduces harm. There is evidence that rehabilitation (even within prison) reduces crime and can be cost-effective. Economic analysis, therefore, reinforces the idea that punishment is not the best solution to reduce the harmful impact of crime. Effective re-entry programs help give former offenders the opportunity to work, providing income and meaning in their lives.
Some offer mentoring, housing placement, workforce development, and job placement, among other support services. They also offer rehabilitation services that are useful even for prisoners without serious mental illness, Fagan says. Pew‑MacArthur's Results First initiative works with states and other government entities to identify cost-effective government programs, including criminal justice programs, such as prison rehabilitation programs. And those who undergo intensive drug treatment programs in prison are less likely to fall out of prison.
For example, it is estimated that sentencing an additional 1% of criminals to prison for property crimes (including theft and manipulation) will reduce crimes recorded next year by 2,693. These guidance materials form the basis for concrete technical assistance provided by UNODC, in a second step, to selected Member States worldwide to support the implementation of effective new or improved prison-based rehabilitation and social reintegration programmes. But virtually everyone studying the subject now agrees that incarceration has reached often counterproductive levels, particularly in the case of drug possession and other non-violent crimes. During the inmate assignment process, those inmates for whom welding satisfies a rehabilitation need would be assigned to those prisons. Requiring the CDCR to collect and report such information would allow the Legislature, CDCR and stakeholders to compare the effectiveness with which rehabilitation resources are used in various prisons and the extent to which further legislative or departmental action is required (such as using this information to allocate time slots for specific prisons).
Researchers have also found that the pessimistic attitude of nothing works toward rehabilitation that helped justify punitive prison policies in the 1970s was exaggerated. While this debate has often been posed as a debate between those who fully believe in punishment and those who want prison time to be reduced completely and replaced by rehabilitation programs, most people believe in both. The WSIPP reviewed evaluation studies of various types of prison and community rehabilitation programs and identified those that are research-based. In an effort to provide better rehabilitation services to inmates, many prisons have begun to provide psychiatrists to help deal with prisoners' mental disorders and psychological problems.
Adopted at the end of the 13th United Nations Congress on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice, the Doha Declaration highlights the importance of supportive measures to support the rehabilitation and social reintegration of prisoners into the community. Inmates often have additional deficits of drug and alcohol addiction, mental and physical illness, and lack of work experience. .