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Peace is not the Absence of Conflict, but the Ability to Cope with It - Coursework Example

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“Peace is not the absence of conflict, but the ability to cope with it”. This is one of the many sayings about peace which will lead us to the history of probation. First of all, probation, in legal terms is the period during which a person or "the probationer," is subject to critical examination and evaluation because of a certain offense that is pointed to have been done by him or her…
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Peace is not the Absence of Conflict, but the Ability to Cope with It
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“Peace is not the absence of conflict, but the ability to cope with it”. This is one of the many sayings about peace which will lead us to the history of probation. First of all, probation, in legal terms is the period during which a person or "the probationer," is subject to critical examination and evaluation because of a certain offense that is pointed to have been done by him or her. In the early times, the increasing offenses being done in society led John Augustus to do pre-trial inquiries on offenders which thus introduced the principle of “probation”. Today, probation is one of the most complex processes that is composed of many probation officers including caseworkers, service brokers, and law enforcement/surveillance. A caseworker is someone who would look at the facts of the whole incident, driving an enlightened conclusion in the end using proofs and evidence. The service broker, on the other hand are those that would help offenders be reintegrated with society making sure the situation brings a positive change in the life of an offender and be able to help him or her get out from this situation without judgment by society. Law enforcement team are those that would stick with what the law says and use it as basis for coming up with a verdict. All these three go through a “role conflict” as the law enforcement officers would have the written law as their bible in judging the offender while the service broker are those that would take time to hear out all sides of the story where the issue of the means justifying the end is a common challenge, which is the same thing for case workers. Thus, there is such a thing as probation conditions to pacify these role conflicts. There are two kinds of probation conditions, the standard probation and the intensive probation supervision. Standard probation is a supervision process done to probationers to study the intensity of the offense they have made which will dictate how long they will have to be on probation. If the risk of re-offending the community is low, they will give an initial release from custody but still maintaining a level of supervision on the person. On the other hand, intensive probation supervision (IPS) is given to an individual who commits a crime and could be sentenced to prison. This is a kind of probation that is similar to a home arrest. However, if an offender in IPS is able to obey all laws, report to the probation officer as directed, and pay court fees as well, he or she is then able to transition to standard probation and eventually is set free (Adult Standard Probation Supervision including Probation Officer Ratios, n.d) Community service as a correctional alternative is one of the significant topics to deal with when it comes to probation. There are major stages of community service that could be summarized into In Home Support where they are taught how to reach their goals for independent living; Skills Services where they can participate in educational, societal, and vocational activities; Correctional Services; and Therapeutic group and Case management to develop healthy habits and patterns in their lives. Community service could be done through a day reporting center which is a place where offenders must report while on probation and where they receive an increased intensity of services. Well, I think community services and day reporting centers are a great alternative because offenders do not only develop themselves in the process but at the same time benefit the society (The Community Connector, n.d) However, aside from community service, there is such a thing as the use of fines as a correctional sanction. There are “day fines” which are monetary sanctions adjusted according to the seriousness of offense while regular fines are those offenses that are easy to categorize and those that cannot be measured based on the intensity of an act. Also, boot camps are another alternative which are done to give a basic training to meet many different purposes such as to develop discipline, the value of being able to follow laws and people in the law, to practice leadership, cooperation and a lot more. For me, there are good and bad sides of boot camps. Speaking of the positive side of which, offenders are able to develop themselves and are given a chance to be good and useful citizens of society through training. However, the down side of which is that the people would have a tendency to take the consequence of offenses lighter because of the fact that doing so would just make you go through a boot camp which is just like going through a test to get in a certain college fraternity. Today, offenders of society also are subjected to various community-based drug treatment programs including residential and non-residential programs. Non-residential program is one where an individual attends detox, counseling and other rehab-related programs during the day, and then returns to their home afterwards while vice versa for the residential program that houses these offenders in a certain facility. Speaking of home confinement for offenders, there are a lot of advantages to this such as allowing them to go through treatment at their own pace, avoiding them being a threat to society, and a lot more. However, the disadvantage of this would be the fact that home confinement makes some people feel isolated and more depressed that makes them do things out of desperation or rebellion. To be able to make sure a certain offender is being watched carefully, there are electronic monitoring steps being done such as putting a device surrounding an offender’s wrist or ankle that is used to track where they are. Though this is really an effective tool, the philosophical issue of human freedom and privacy is being breached where the question of “how far can the law go to take steps that are still humane and just” is constantly being asked. Bibliography: "The Early History of Probation." The Probation Service - Home. N.p., n.d. Web. 9 Mar. 2012. Read More
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