Communities vary in their tendency towards punitive or rehabilitative ideologies and their subsequent willingness to reintegrate offenders into their local housing, employment, and social networks. Sometimes this tendency is based on dramatic and visible experiences. Consider, on one hand, a community that has benefited by a significant reduction in gang violence after instituting a restorative justice program. In the program,gang member offenders were mandated to participate in community service hours doing youth mentoring and neighborhood clean-up projects. Consider, on the other hand, a community that experienced the rape and murder of a child after a known offender was released to community supervision. The forensic psychology professional who works in either community will face important challenges in trying to work with the expectations and/or fears of the community.
To prepare for this Discussion:
Review Chapter 6 in Community Corrections. Pay attention to the traditional and alternative probation pathways for offenders re-entering the community. Think about the differences in ideology behind each pathway for re-entry.
Review Chapter 7 in Community Corrections and think about conditions of parole and the requirements for offenders on parole to re-enter community settings.
Review Chapter 13 in Community Corrections. Consider specialized and problematic offender typologies. Think about whether a punishment or rehabilitation ideology would work better with each population.
Consider how the community interfaces with offenders in the community and how that impacts the application of forensic psychology in community settings.
Think about the impact of ideologies on the application of forensic psychology in community settings, that is, how a punishment ideology differs from a rehabilitation ideology.
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