Prison systems and corrections are often being ignored by many institutions with regards to the people who are inside these confinements. In many countries, these institutions were in the least priorities in allocating government budgets. With these situations happening, even those who were incarcerated in the prison facilities are neglected by many. Moreover, some researchers conducted studies focusing on the situations of the prison systems in a particular community. These studies presented various facts that highlighted the need for reforms and attention on the corrections facilities and the prisoners.
The article concerned focus on one specific study conducted by researchers from a prominent university in the United States focused on the establishment of database of inmates who are with disabilities. The study was also made to assess the number of individuals who were incarcerated that cannot see, hear or speak. The assessment also included those who are physically handicapped inmates. The authors conducted a research about a country-wide evaluation of the number of individuals serving their prison sentences with physical disabilities or impairments.
There are previous researches conducted about the situations of these prisoners suffering due to their disabilities. Based on these studies conducted, it was found out that approximately 1 out of 3 inmates are with physical deformities or having dysfunctional senses. These individuals are also said to need for immediate concern and attention with regards to the facilities needed by these persons with disabilities. Another past research conducted dealt with the research problem that some of the states do not have sufficient data about prisoners’ status and other information with regards to their personal circumstances.
These past researches encountered a lot of hindrances in collecting the data they needed because of differences in each state corrections in terms of dealing with procedures to count those who are considered as persons with disabilities. The instrument they used in gathering this information was found to be ineffective and lacking of focus on the theme of the study. The authors who initiated the concerned study utilized these findings to come up with new strategies in doing the entire research.
They modified their approaches in collecting the data they want to furnish the report. The article mentioned that they focused on the three main objectives of the study. The first objectives centers on gathering information whether a specific prison facility has its own database about the number of their inmates with physical disabilities. The second goal of the research is to scrutinize and the records made available by the respective prison authorities about information on the number of inmates they have that has physical afflictions.
They are also concerned with the types of deformities each person has. The third objective of their study is to find out what are the efforts made by the government of United States to help these persons with disabilities. They want to find out what does the government provide to address the needs of these physically-handicapped prisoners. With regards to the tools in gathering the data they needed in the study, the researchers provided survey questionnaires for each state department concerned through postal mail or electronic mail.
The documents they made asked for detailed information that will be critical in reaching the objectives of the study. These survey documents then were sent and addressed to the respective officers that is in charge with the information about each prison facility. They requested voluntary involvement on these people to help them with the data they need to gather. During the data collection processes, they found out that more than 10 prison structures have no available electronic mail address. After a month, several respondents of the survey replied with their completed survey documents.
One of the good points made by these researchers is the type of survey documents they furnished compared to the previous versions of the questionnaires used in the same line of study. They also showed more enthusiasm and persistence in gathering the information from the prison officials. These can be seen when the researchers made extra efforts when they found out that some respondents do not have their electronic mail addresses. As a result, higher percentage of the respondents responds to their request
On the other hand, their weak points can also be noticed because there is still substantial number of states that did not participate on their study. This incident still shows that they still lack influence on persuading those subjects to take part on their study. The proponents’ lack of influence should have been resolved by asking for the federal agencies endorsements that can convince all to participate. They should have followed it up and explained through voice communications or personal dealings the relevance of their study for those non-participating subjects to do otherwise.
The authors wrapped up the study with a clear statement that more researches in line with their recent study should carry out. The researchers find the overall findings to be lacking for more respondents participation form the other key states. They believe that a more conclusive finding should have been established if all of the prospected respondents participated in the study. They identified some of the problems that hindered most of the respondents to participate in their study.
One of these problems is the lack of influence by the researchers to persuade the prison authorities to reveal the data they needed for the study. The authors should have tapped people for every state that can fully deliver the expectations they want. They should have asked for research assistance from the concerned agencies to be able to direct those prison officials to complete the survey forms. With all of these available ways to achieve full authority to conclude a study, every researcher will have better outputs in their research agenda.
References Krienert, J. , Henderson, M. , & Vandiver, D. Inmates with Physical Disabilities: Establishing a Knowledge Base. Southwestern Association of Criminal Justice. Volume 1, Number 1. < http://swjcj. cjcenter. org/archives/1. 1> The results of the pilot study indicate the need for additional analysis on the topic of inmates with disabilities in corrections. There appears to be little consistency across states in the collection and maintenance of information detailing the number and types of disabilities found within institutional populations.
At least half of the state departments of corrections that responded to this survey revealed that they did not keep figures with respect to how many inmates had disabilities. Moreover, as the researchers attempted to increase the number of responses to the survey several problems were revealed. First, some states simply refused to participate in the survey yet, stated that they made accommodations for inmates with disabilities and were in compliance with ADA standards.
Second, it also became clear that several states did not know who would have the information needed to complete the survey. Finally, several states did reveal that currently no data is available to determine how many inmates suffer from physical disabilities or what services are provided. Consequently, the information revealed by the pilot study was quite limited and additional studies are necessary to obtain a clear picture of the number and types of services provided to inmates with disabilities.
As some states indicated they were unable to determine how many inmates suffer from disabilities due to a lack of data at the state level, future research should focus on available information at the institutional level. In sum, the fact that several state departments of corrections did not have the data on the number of inmates with disabilities and in fact, did not know where the data could be found or what programs were offered by institutions within their jurisdiction has tremendous implications for correctional policy.
The results imply that many state departments of corrections might not be in full compliance with the mandates issued within the confines of the Americans With Disabilities Act. Therefore, some departments of corrections are likely to find themselves at a disadvantage when confronted by inmate lawsuits claiming violations of the Americans With Disabilities Act. Unfortunately, current data do not allow an assessment of this implication. This project comprises an initial assessment of the current state of disability information available in state prisons.
Data is presented from a pilot study of 38 responding departments of corrections. Information was collected concerning data collection practices, numbers of physically disabled offenders, and services available to those with physical disabilities residing in state correctional facilities. Half of the responding states did not maintain information about the numbers or services relating to physically disabled offenders. This examination highlights the need for additional research in this area. Without accurate baseline data, programs and services for this population cannot be properly evaluated.