15th August 2017


Do they even deserve the help for what they did? Was what they did a cause of not getting the help they should’ve? What happens after their release? Each year, roughly 20,000 New Zealand citizens are evicted and going through prisons, with approximately 91 percent of them having drug or alcohol addictions, and/or mental health issues throughout their lifetime. 91 percent  of all locked up are under the influence of these addictions and problems, committing these crimes that affects their lives forever. “What did they do isn’t the only question that should be asked, but “what’s being done” and which is the least asked, but just as real of a question. With such a high majority of these people evicted, surely there must be rehabilitation available or help being offered, but there isn’t. So what’s to be done, do they somehow fix themselves, or get better at all? What’s not to say they might get worse once they’ve left prison, having themselves be influenced again to repeat crimes. I’m going to speak about statistics for the problem, what’s being done and what needs to happen.

What’s the problem with drug and alcohol addicted criminals being evicted to prison for their crimes? Obviously other than the crime they’ve committed. The problem is based around the prisons failing system with helping these affected criminals recover from their addictions. The prisons system fails to ensure that the criminals evicted, are attended to and have help overcoming their problems, establishing a healthier mind set for themselves prior to their release through rehabilitation programmes. But what does rehabilitation programmes mean? They mean that effected criminals get help overcoming their issues in a therapeutic way. Like i said, 20,000 going through prisons a year, 91% of them problemed by their addictions and nobody to help them recover except themselves. That’s 18200 out of 20,000 criminals. Money is rarely spent of prisoners to ensure their healing and care to get them out of their unhealthy mindsets. Unfortunately, rehabilitation care is extremely unlikely for people serving less than 2 years in prison, having only about 5% of these affected people in prison each year are enabled to the programmes. Meaning only 910 of 18200 alcohol and drug addicted criminals are actually even offered the rehabilitation programmes in which every criminal related should be getting. Because what happens to these people effected after their release? Prison doesn’t magically heal people from their addictions, so what’s not to say without the help they need they’re not going to repeat what put them in prison in the first place.

Secondly but why is the prison system failing, and is there anything actually being done? Having so many people passing and entering prison each year with such a high majority of the crimes including drugs and alcohol, you’d wonder if or what’s being done? Alcoholism and addiction isn’t necessary about the quantity of which consumed that does the damaging, but it’s a disease and is all about behaviour. And any rational person could agree a disease needs taken care professionally let alone in general. The system is failing because the prisons are not enabled to have their prisoners undertake care. however, there are organisations of people who are trying to change this already, but not for the overall population of alcoholics and drug addicts but only for those that are likely to reoffend after release. An organisation linked to this did a research to find if those who did have go through care reoffended or not, and the study showed that those undergoing help had a huge effect on whether or not they reoffended.  A recent study told us that the amount the corrections rehabilitation department spends on drug and alcohol rehabilitation is just $3.4 million of its $1.1 billion budget.

Thirdly, rehabilitation programmes are commonly spoken of, but only a few are actually put into place. But if they are put into place the treatment will consist of psychological doctors and counselors, bringing in their own methods and programmes to treat people.

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