Improvements to the Correctional System

According to the textbook, prison reform is often effectuated by and through the legislature. Often, these changes are meant for improvement; however, they can have an unintended consequence. Imagine that you are a state legislator that heads a committee for the Department of Corrections. Your responsibilities include recommending improvements to the correctional system, both domestic and international, (e.g., Guantanamo Bay). Go to Cornell University Law School’s Website, located at, and review the Eighth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.

Write a three to five (3-5) page paper in which you:

  1. Suggest two (2) actions that the corrections system can take in order to attain higher levels of professionalism. Provide a rationale for your response.
  2. Take a position as to whether or not conditions of correctional facilities circumvent the “cruel and unusual punishment standard” of the Eighth Amendment. Provide a rationale for your response.
  3. Support or refute the removal of corporal punishment from the U.S. corrections system. Provide a rationale for your response.
  4. Create an argument for or against intermediate sanctions as a deterrent of crime. Support your viewpoint with one (1) example of intermediate sanctions that reflects your opinion.
  5. Debate whether or not correctional facilities are adequately equipped to deal with mentally ill inmates. Provide a rationale for your response.
  6. Use at least two (2) quality references. Note: Wikipedia and other Websites do not qualify as academic resources.

Your assignment must follow these formatting requirements:

  • Be typed, double spaced, using Times New Roman font (size 12), with one-inch margins on all sides; citations and references must follow APA or school-specific format. Check with your professor for any additional instructions.
  • Include a cover page containing the title of the assignment, the student’s name, the professor’s name, the course title, and the date. The cover page and the reference page are not included in the required assignment page length.

The specific course learning outcomes associated with this assignment are:

  • Determine the U.S. Constitutional amendments that apply to correctional management and operations.
  • Recommend improvements to selected areas of corrections.
  • Defend the purposes of corrections.
  • Examine the reform of American criminal justice beginning with 15th century Europe.
  • Use technology and information resources to research issues in correctional facility policies.
  • Write clearly and concisely about correctional facility policies using proper writing mechanics
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