To most, the word 'prison' is intimidating and unnerving. Is the idea of imprisonment out dated in today's society or is it a vital part? Do we look deep enough at the issues behind the crimes or do we just adopt the idea of you do the crime, you do the time?
Worldwide there are around 8.5 million people in prison, of which around 2.2 million are in the USA alone.
The current population of Sydney is around 4.58 million. The current amount of people either on parole or probation in the USA exceeds this number by almost 400,000 thousand. In Australia, we have 116 prisoners per 100,000 whereas the USA leads with 715 per 100,000.  Why are these figures so widely different when on the face of it both countries are similar in ideals? What about the health of the inmates? It has been stated that around 50% of US prisoners suffer from mental illness. Surely this would relate to many of their original crimes and thus convictions? Is there a better form of rehabilitation and integration?

Simon Hewson©2012