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Incarceration in Canada Essay

  • Submitted by: janeteaston
  • on December 8, 2008
  • Category: Social Issues
  • Length: 1,226 words

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Below is an essay on "Incarceration in Canada" from Anti Essays, your source for research papers, essays, and term paper examples.

Criminal Injustice in Canada

  Canada‚Äôs incarceration rate is 110 prisoners per 100,000 people, a quota that is intermediate between other countries such as Sweden, France and England. The imprisonment percentage is not something that arises from increased crime rates, but from escalation of government inspection, itself a predictable consequence of a digression in the economy. Crime is dependent on the socioeconomic problems that rise and fall during the year. Distress and desperation exert a major influence capable of causing widespread behavioural change in society. The moral panics that follow generally cause the government to promise expansion of the war on crime (Schissel, 423). Therefore, the government must come up with more social protection programs that would help to alleviate the crime rate.

  The strain theory is a crucial element that determines the rate of crime at any given point. The strain theory suggests that in times economic downturns, there are less employment opportunities, and therefore higher amounts of criminal activity. The implications of strain theory can be seen rapidly: when there is high employment just one year, the robbery rate the following year is alleviated (Schissel, 420) Political economy theorists state that incarceration becomes more common as the government attempts to minimize members of the underclass from the labour market, a common solution to problem populations (Schissel, 407). Due to this, prisons remain overcrowded and social control is minimized. Lowering the amount of people incarcerated would increase the efforts of social control (Schissel, 408). It is not necessarily an increase in crime that augments the ranks of the imprisoned; maybe nothing more than a result of law makers eager to use jail as a resolution to fiscal distress (Schissel, 423).

  Socioeconomic changes cannot bear the full blame for all crime, nor for high incarceration. Section 27 in the Charter of Rights and Freedoms requires...

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