3 articles Tag justice

Career Options in Criminal Justice

If you are considering a career in criminal justice you may be surprised by the diversity and variety of jobs that are available. Opportunities can range from working in prisons or probation, legal aid or public defender positions and even charities serving specific criminal justice interests.
The possibilities are wide ranging and almost all of the jobs help you contribute to society and have a direct impact on people’s lives.

While each of the specific jobs has different requirements you will typically be deeply involved with protecting society and assuring the safety of the general public.

You will be required to interact with people from all different backgrounds and will need to very quickly develop a connection with them.

Your intuition and interpersonal aptitude will be put to the test with almost every encounter, and the more skilled you are in these areas the greater positive impact you will have.

Typical Jobs in Criminal Justice

There are diverse job categories and opportunities within criminal justice. For instance, you may choose to be a police officer that protects the community and keeps people safe from crime. In this role, you will have direct on the street interaction with a wide range of individuals in potentially difficult situations.

If you prefer to work in a different environment, you could consider become a parole officer. In this role you would work with offenders and provide pre-sentence recommendations to the court. You would also work with individuals about to be released from prison and help monitor them and ensure public safety after they are placed back into the community.

Numerous jobs are available for individuals interested in working as a prison officer. These positions are very challenging. You may also want to see if working with youthful offenders is the right path for you. As a youth offending officer you may participate in youth Intensive Supervision programmes and other initiatives that are specifically designed to assure better outcomes among young people.

Other Types of Criminal Justice Jobs

 There are extensive options available for criminal justice jobs beyond the typical ones mentioned above. If your calling is to work in defense of those charged with a crime, you could consider a career with the Legal Aid Agency or the Public Defender Service. There are also numerous charities that offer the opportunity to work for criminal justice reform.

Among the careers in criminal justice there are a number of offerings that are health-related. If you focus on offender health you could pursue a role as offender health nurse, pharmacist, mental health nurse or a drug treatment nurse.

There are also specialized opportunities available in the field of substance misuse, including substance misuse recovery workers and nurses.

If you are interested in a career in criminal justice be sure to research the different options there for you. It would also be very helpful to talk with people in the jobs you are interested in and ask for their help and advice as you evaluate your career opportunities.

Women Not Reporting Rape Because of Lack of Faith in Legal System

Following the post I wrote last week on Michael Le Vell and a few of the comments on that post, after receiving a press release today with the above headline, I thought I’d write about the survey conducted by Reveal Magazine, for the sake of balance.

The survey revealed that of the women asked, a rather shocking 16% said that they’d been raped at some point in their lives. Of those in the 16%, only 20% reported the crime to the police and the main reasons for their reluctance was a combination of thinking that the chances of conviction were too low and lack of faith in the legal system.

Perhaps the most shocking part for me, though, was the following passage:

“Latest figures from Ministry of Justice and the Home Office estimate up to 95,000 rapes committed each year, but as low as only 15% are reported to police, only one in five of those cases end up in court and only a third of those result in convictions”

In my previous post, my main focus was on the false claims made by people in court and how damaging they can be to genuine cases. The fact that of the almost 100,000 cases of rape every year, roughly 5000 of those result in conviction, is it any wonder that women are feeling totally despondent about their chances of finding justice?

Further to this, statistics from RAINN suggest that around 70% of cases of sexual assault are perpetrated by someone who is already known to the victim, leaving many women in a position where, if they don’t get a guilty verdict, they’ll potentially have to have daily contact with their assailant, the bleak truth becomes all too clear.

The main point here is that somewhere along the line, thousands and thousands of women are being let down by a legal system that only seems to make the vulnerable more vulnerable and we need to find better ways to encourage women to report crimes and methods of supporting them once they do.

For more information on where to get help, please look at the Rape Crisis site. You can also call 0808 802 99 99 and speak to a trained advisor who can help you to find your local rape crisis center.

(Lines are open 12noon-2.30pm & 7pm-9.30pm every day of the year)

 

The Death Penalty – What’s Your View?

Capital punishment was abolished in the United Kingdom in part because of the case of Timothy Evans, an innocent man who was hanged in 1950.

There’s been a lot of talk about the death penalty floating about in the last few months, due to some horrible world events being beamed at us through the news. The Boston Bombers, the Woolwich murderers, the start of the April Jones murder trial. I’ve seen a lot of slogans and pictures on Facebook that suggest that the perpetrators of these heinous crimes should be put to death (which is a moot point in all but the case of the Boston Bombers, because although Massachusetts isn’t a death penalty state, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev is being charged for Federal crimes which carry the death penalty regardless of where they are committed) but I wonder if the people calling for death and baying for more blood have really thought it through?

Firstly, could you say without a shadow of a doubt, that you could be the person to administer the lethal injection, flip the switch on an electric chair or gas chamber? Sure, you don’t have to, you aren’t the executioner, but surely if you call for death you should have the courage of your convictions? Could you look a human being in the eye with 100% certainty of their guilt and send them to their grave? I’m not sure I could.

Secondly, I struggle massively with the thought of how flawed our legal system can be. I have huge respect for police officers who enforce our laws and criminal lawyers who do their best to secure convictions, but there have been cases of innocent men and women being incarcerated. Imagine if we’d excuted Barry George, the man wrongly convicted of killing Jill Dando, who spent SEVEN years in prison before evidence proved him innocent? And what about Timothy Evans, a man whose wrongful hanging was the very reason that Capital Punishment was abolished in the UK?

Another thing that bothers me is this; I firmly believe that execution is still based on religious doctrine, the concept that a person will meet their judgement in the afterlife and spend eternity burning in hell. This is simply not an idea I subscribe to, so from my point of view, killing a criminal is releasing them from life and therefore the consequences of their actions.

I’m not saying that the system of incarceration is perfect; it puts a huge strain on governments, the rate of recidivism is ridiculously high with most crimes and, if the media is anything to go by, prison is less of a punishment these days with gyms, libraries and access to video games. But I’m not sure that I agree with the death penalty either.

From a very personal place, a real hot button for me is the issue of paedophilia. I recall a few years ago watching a Louis Theroux documentary based in a maximum security prison in the USA which contained some of the most dangerous sex offenders in the country and they were running a programme of rehabilitation which claimed to be able to ‘cure’ people of paedophilia and used voluntary castration as a means of removing urges. I firmly, strongly, wholly believe that there is NOTHING that can be done to cure a paedophile, so if these people are to remain a persistent danger to children, what’s the point of allowing them to remain on the planet? But, again, could you be the one to flick the switch?

I’d be curious to hear your opinions on this; it’s one of those subjects that I go back and forth on and never seem to come to any sort of conclusion about and I don’t know if I ever will, but I’d love to know where you stand on the issue.