Inthe state of California, two of the most renowned correctionalfacilities include the California Substance Abuse Treatment Facilityand State Prison, Corcoran and the Pleasant Valley State Prison.Popularly recognized as a minimum-to-maximum state-owned prison, thePleasant Valley Prison houses convicted murderers and other criminalswithin its confines on a long-term basis. Similarly, the Corcorancorrectional facility is a government-owned prison whose centralpurpose is to remand the inmates until the point where they are in acondition deemed safe to be released. About the operation of prisons,several issues need to be observed for the facilities to operate.Apparently, some of these constraints include the recruitment ofcorrectional officers, ensuring the safety of staff and the inmates,overcrowding as well as the further activation and expansion of thesefacilities [CITATION Cen13 l 1033 ].While the budget may be limited, these aspects need to be adequatelyaddressed for proper functionality.
Diversionprograms can be described as a design of sentencing that is developedwith the specific goal of avoiding criminal charges and records sothat at the end of the day, the courts, police or the probationoffice are relieved leading to better outcomes in comparison to theinvolvement of the court system. Additionally, the law offender alsoavoids the prosecution process by engaging in the various activitiesand requirements of the program followed by the subsequent successfulcompletion of the same [ CITATION Ska08 l 1033 ].The two correctional facilities named above can significantly benefitfrom applying the diversion program technique. Different studies andreports have indicated the importance of this platform. Primarily themain advantages are founded on the fact that the low –leveloffenders, as well as the first time offenders, can be taken care ofas well as the focus on mental health problems and drug and substanceabuse. Furthermore, there has been a great increase in the number ofpeople being incarcerated leading to asignificant rise in the prisons hence overcrowding and resourcelimitations. In such cases, diversion is an effective alternative fordecongestion [ CITATION Leg14 l 1033 ].
Thequestion regarding the better correctional facilities between theprivate and the government owned prisons is one that raises a highlycontested debate. It is clear that there are two sides to this issue.While some people argue that the private facilities are costeffective, others maintain that cost-effectiveness is not the remedyfor the provision of quality services. However, the main facets ofthe delivery of a safe, quality and cost-effective services arecritical. A concrete analysis tends to lean on the advocacy forgovernment –owned facilities. There is evidence indicating that thecost-saving implications are not as promising as they may seem. Onthe contrary, the low staffing and training in private prisons is theprecursor for the development of violence incidences and escapes [ CITATION Ska08 l 1033 ].The existence of evidence showing that assaults by inmates weresignificantly higher in private facilities than in government prisonsis an indicator that choosing an institution that focuses on theimprovement of lives rather than the saving money is of utmostimportance.
Runninga prison is not an easy task, and the need for sufficient funding isa prerequisite requirement for the efficiency and effectiveness ofthe programs offered in the correctional facility. Most of the time,the areas that are highly affected by financial constraints includestaffing, provision of healthcare services, and the supervision ofthe inmate population. These areas require the greatest resourceallocations and therefore, reduced funding forces inadequateemployment of staff, limited facility expansion and insufficienthealthcare provision including mental and dental health among others.A critical observation indicates that increase in the cost of theexpansion, especially in drug treatment and rehabilitation, is partof the reason why private prisons have come into play and thus thesignificant drop in the level of quality of services [ CITATION Rog07 l 1033 ].Prison managementhas to work on this limited budget and fit despite the highlightedfinancial issues by engaging in practices such as diversion.
Thedevelopment and implementation of the necessary policies thatadvocate for proper funding play a vital role in the prevention ofrecidivism. These strategies are oriented towards directing thefinancial resources to the management of re-offence. Varioustrade-offs can be made, and they include the application of prisoneducation by giving financial aid to inmates for college tuition,developing community-based rectification programs, and theapplication of risk assessment tools. Also, the recidivism reductionfund can be utilized to evaluate the progress of the current programsas well as to broaden the existing grants. Ultimately, this can bringa balance in the system by giving incentives to reduce correctionalfacility admissions, prevent the exceeding the court-ordered prisonpopulation and also decrease the total number of prison bedscontracted [ CITATION Rog07 l 1033 ].In other words, an equilibrium can best be achieved by theadvancement of plans and guidelines that are focused on the factorshighly associated with recidivism and dealing with the same byimplementing these strategies as recommended.
Center for Health and Justice. (2013). A National Survey of Criminal Justice Diversion Programs and Initiatives. Chicago: Open Society Foundations.
Legislative Analyst`s Office. (2014, February 28). The 2014-15 Budget: Administration’s Response to Prison Overcrowding Order. Retrieved from The California Legislature`s Non-Partisan iscal and Policy Advisor: http://www.lao.ca.gov/reports/2014/budget/three-judge-panel/three-judge-panel-022814.aspx
Smith-Heisters, S. (2008, October). The Nonviolent Offender Rehabilitation Act: Prison Overcrowding, Parole and Sentencing Reform . Retrieved from Reason: http://reason.org/files/fca481a6c38c69c7f9ae9761e97bb053.pdf
Warren, R. (2007). Evidence-Based Practices and State Sentencing Policy: Ten Policy Initiatives to Reduce Recidivism. Policy: Ten Policy Initiatives to Reduce Recidivism, 1308-1316.